MONTGOMERY, Ala. - The No. 46-ranked Arizona men's tennis team was shut out 4-0 by the defending Blue/Gray tennis champions and No. 17-ranked Texas Tech today in the first round of action at the Blue/Gray National Classic at the Lagoon Park Tennis Center.
The Wildcats will face the loser of the Auburn/Boise State match tomorrow at 4:30 CT in the second round.
"We had our chances on pretty much all the courts in the first sets," head coach Tad Berkowitz said. "Tech though stepped up and did a good job to recapture the momentum. The guys fought hard today against a good team."
After an hour and half rain delay the Wildcats had a rough start, dropping the doubles point on courts one and two. At No. 2, senior Geoff Embry and freshman Sam Barr went up against the No.59-ranked Texas Tech duo of Gonzalo Escobar and Vitor Manzini and dropped an 8-1 loss. In the No. 1 spot, junior Jason Zafiros and freshman Andre Vidaller were edged by the No.76-ranked pair of Raony Carvalho and Rafael Garcia 8-4 to secure the doubles point for the Red Raiders. The freshman-senior tandem of Kieren Thompson and Andres Carrasco were up 4-3 on Raphael Pfister and David Gonzalez on court three when the Red Raiders clinched the point.
In singles play, the Red Raiders continued their streak posting three singles victories to close the match.
No. 18-ranked Escobar upended Jay Goldman in straight sets 6-3, 6-2 in the No. 1 spot to tally a 2-0 lead. Goldman trailed 4-1 in the first set before notching two games, but Escobar grabbed the 6-3 first set. In the second, Escobar built a 3-2 lead and Goldman never recovered falling 6-2.
The Red Raider's advantage grew to 3-0 in the No. 2 slot. No. 22-ranked Carvalho followed up with a 6-4, 6-4 victory over Zafiros. The junior led in the first set 4-3 before Carvalho powered his way back capturing three straight games. In the second set, Carvalho marked up a 3-2 lead before Zafiros responded, but trailed 5-4 eventually falling 6-4.
With the Wildcats battling Texas Tech on the other four courts, the match was clinched on court five. Texas Tech's Pfister sealed the win for the Red Raiders against Thompson in straight sets. Pfister edged Thompson 7-6 (4) in the first set before marking up a 6-2 second set win.
In other action, Vidaller claimed a 7-5 first set win over Manzini in the No. 3 spot and the freshman was leading 5-4 when the match was suspended. In the No. 4 spot, Embry dropped a tight first set 7-6 (9) against Gabriel Wanderly and the two were even at 4-4 in the second before play stopped.
In the No. 6 position, freshman Mario Urquidi dropped the first set 7-6 in a tight 7-5 tiebreaker and was trailing 5-4 to Ryan Ybarra when play was suspended.
With the loss, the Wildcats drop to 5-4 while Texas Tech improves to 7-4.
Tomorrow's action has the Wildcats squaring off against the loser of the No. 37-ranked Boise State and No. 22-ranked Auburn match on the second day of competition at 4:30 CT (3:30 MT).
No. 17 Texas Tech 4, No. 46 Arizona 0
Lagoon Park Tennis Center -- Montgomery, Ala.
1. No. 76 Carvalho/Garcia (TT) def. Zafiros/Vidaller (UA) 8-4*
2. No. 59 Escobar/Manzini (TT) def. Embry/Barr (UA) 8-1
3. Carrasco/Thompson (UA) vs. Pfister/Gonzalez (TT) DNF
Texas Tech Wins Doubles Point
Order of finish, 2,1*
*Clinched doubles point
1. No. 18 Gonzalo Escobar (TT) def. Jay Goldman (UA) 6-3, 6-2
2. No. 22 Raony Carvalho (TT) def. Jason Zafiros (UA) 6-4, 6-4
3. Andre Vidaller (UA) vs. Vitor Manzini (TT) 7-5, 5-4 DNF
4. Gabriel Wanderly (TT) vs. Geoff Embry 7-6 (9), 4-4 DNF
5. Raphael Pfister (TT) def. Kieren Thompson (UA) 7-6 (4), 6-2*
6. Ryan Ybarra (TT) vs. Mario Urquidi (UA) 7-6 (5), 5-4 DNF
Order of finish, 1,2,5*
*Clinched the match