The No. 47 Washington men's tennis team (7-5) renewed a small-scale rivalry tonight against No. 33 Minnesota, (7-3) losing a tough 4-3 match.
It is the sixth straight year the two teams have met, with each side taking three matches.
The Huskies were hoping for more tonight against a good Golden Gophers team that they are so familiar with.
“I’m frustrated,” head coach Matt Anger said. “Both teams played hard, but we had some lapses, I think we are capable of being very good, but we need each guy on it without lapses. I don’t think we did that tonight.”
Tonight's matchup opened with a hard-fought doubles point. The teams went back and forth on all three courts early on. Senior Mitch Stewart and junior Enzo Sommer were victorious 6-4. The scoring hit a bit of a lull for a few minutes before Senior Jake Douglas , and freshman Jack Davis won 6-4 to clinch the opening point. The other match was called.
Unfortunately for the Huskies, they did not come out as strong in singles. No. 73 Douglas and No. 57 Stewart each dropped their first set 6-0. The move was unprecedented and something that took the whole team out of a rhythm.
“It was a little tough on our other guys when Jake and Mitch lose first set 6-0,” Anger said. “I’m pretty sure that is not going to happen again, I don’t think that has ever happened before. Those things affect the overall team when you give the opponent some quick points. Instead of being up 2-0 it’s 2-2, and now the other team knows they have as much of a chance as we do.”
Both Douglas and Stewart lost in straight sets after their poor first sets. Douglas fell fairly quickly 6-2 in the second set while Stewart lost 7-6 a heartbreaker in a tight 8-6 tiebreaker.
As for the rest of the team, sophomore Amit Batta won a quick 6-3, 6-4 match. Freshman Alexis Alvarez picked up the other win for the Dawgs, a 7-5, 7-5 victory. Sommer fought his way back in a tough second set before ultimately falling 8-6 in the tiebreaker to No. 45 Stefan Milicevic , this evened the match at 3-3 before Foley fell in the third set 6-2.
The Huskies play again tomorrow afternoon at 3 p.m against Portland State. Depending on the weather it could potentially be the first outdoor match of the season.
Reach reporter Kyle Gehler at email@example.com. Twitter: @KyleGehler