A year ago Texas Tech won 28 matches and hosted a NCAA Regional but going into tonight's match against No. 4 Baylor the Red Raiders were winless in the Big 12 while having an overall record of just 10-14. Baylor was down a man with Jimmy Bendeck (#4 singles/#2 doubles) a late scratch so BU had to make adjustments to both its doubles and singles lineup. Texas Tech took advantage of the shift and picked up wins at No. 2 and No. 3 to take the early 1-0 lead. In singles play, Texas Tech would add five first sets and both Jolan Cailleau and Jackson Cobb would win in straight sets to make it 3-0. Baylor fought back to get splits at No. 3, No. 4, and No. 5 while Texas Tech got a split at No. 2.
Baylor's Johannes Schretter, Max Tchoutakian, and Will Little would each pull through to tie the match at 3-3. Texas Tech senior Carlos DiLaura led Baylor freshman Constantin Frantzen 4-1 in the third at No. 5 but Frantzen took the next two to pull within 4-3. DiLaura broke back for 5-3 but Frantzen broke and held for 5-5 and two games later it went to a tiebreak. DiLaura went up 4-0 in the tiebreak but Frantzen rallied to tie it at 6-6. Frantzen had match points at 7-6 and 8-7 but DiLaura pulled it out 10-8.
Sunday was as wild a day as it gets in the SEC with four lower ranked women's teams picking up wins with two of those wins coming over No. 1 Florida and No. 2 Georgia. The SEC is the only Power 5 Women's Conference to have its conference tournament this coming week so many of these same teams will see each other much sooner than they had probably hoped. Sunday was a day of redemption for some teams on the men's side with both Oregon and Michigan overcoming tough losses to pick up a top 25 win.
Prior to Sunday, it'd been 16 years since Oklahoma State had last defeated a top 3 team but that's exactly what they did on Sunday afternoon in Waco. Third-ranked Baylor jumped on Oklahoma State in doubles and picked up a pair of 6-2 wins at No. 1 and No. 2 to take the early 1-0 lead. Oklahoma State got back in the match by taking four opening sets in singles and Lukas Finzelberg would tie the match up with a quick 6-3, 6-0 win at No. 6. Baylor answered with straight set wins from Max Tchoutakian and Johannes Schretter at No. 2 and No. 3 to go in front 3-1. Oklahoma State's Artur Dubinski followed with a straight set win at No. 4 and then Julian Cash won in three sets at No. 1 to even the match at 3-3.
As Cash was closing out his match, Oklahoma State's Tristan Meraut and Baylor Jimmy Bendeck were headed to a second set tiebreak at No. 5 with Meraut having taken the first set. Meraut led the tiebreak 4-2 at the changeover and he would pull away and close it out 7-3 with Bendeck double faulting on the match point.
It may have been wet on the east side of the San Francisco Bay (UCLA/Cal rained out) but on the south side it stayed dry long enough for Stanford to upset No. 5 USC 4-1. Stanford came into the match having lost its last four to USC and after dropping the doubles point it may have thought No. 5 wasn't too far off. Stanford refocused in singles and took all six first sets and then one-by-one it managed to close them out in straight sets. Sameer Kumar tied the match at 1-1 with a 6-4, 6-2 win at No. 2 and then David Wilczynski made it 2-1 with a 6-1, 6-4 win at No. 3. Tom Fawcett put the Cardinal within a point of the clinch after winning 6-4, 6-2 at No. 1 and then senior Brandon Sutter closed it out with a 7-6, 6-1 win at No. 5.
One streak lived on and another came to an end on Monday night in Fort Worth as No. 19 TCU won a 4-3 thriller over No. 8 Texas A&M. Texas A&M came into the match riding a 13-match winning streak while TCU entered having won its last five. TCU got off to a quick start in doubles by going up break leads on all three courts however Texas A&M would break back on two of them.
The one court where Texas A&M couldn't get any traction was at No. 1 as TCU's Cameron Norrie and Jerry Lopez went up 2-0 and cruised to a 6-1 win. Next door at No. 2, TCU's Reese Stalder and Hudson Blake jumped out to a 2-0 lead however Texas A&M's Valentin Vacherot and Aleksandre Bakshi would take the next four to go in front 4-2. Stalder and Blake came right back and took the next four themselves by breaking from 30/40, holding serve, breaking on the no-ad point, and then holding from 40/30 with a Blake service winner to take it 6-4. The match at No. 3 went unfinished with TCU's Alex Rybakov serving up 5-4 (30/30).
For the second down in a row the Bay Area delivered some high quality but on Saturday the big winners were the visitors from the Lone Star State. TCU came into the weekend ranked just outside the top 30 with a 5-4 record but they'll head to Santa Barbara three games over .500 after coming back from a 3-0 deficit to defeat No. 41 Stanford 4-3. TCU made a doubles lineup adjustment by dropping an ailing Reese Stalder from No. 1 to No. 3 and moving Cameron Norrie up from No. 3 to No. 1 in an attempt to find a way to sweep the top two courts. On Friday night against Cal, Stalder teamed with Jerry Lopez to defeat the top ranked doubles team of Filip Bergevi and Florian Lakat but during singles he was forced to retire with what appeared to be some kind of shoulder injury.
Stanford's No. 3 team of David Wilczynski and Brandon Sutter would take advantage of the situation and jump on Stalder and Gianni Mancini by breaking Stalder from 30/40 to go in front 3-1. Sutter held for 4-1 and then Stanford broke Mancini from 30/40 to make it 5-1. Wilczynski would serve it out on the no-ad point to give Stanford a 6-1 win.
WOW - what a tremendous day of college tennis action! The day got started early with No. 2 Wake Forest hosting No. 5 North Carolina and it finished 10 hours later with No. 31 TCU pulling off an upset win over No. 6 Cal. Both of the matches in Orlando were tremendous with No. 36 Florida State and No. 15 Florida playing in front of a College MatchDay record-crowd and then at the same time on the other six courts you had Tulsa and Central Florida go down to the wire.
I'll start off with the biggest upset of the day, in terms of ranking, which took place in Palo Alto between a resurgent No. 41 Stanford and No. 8 Texas. The Cardinal was coming off a huge win on Tuesday night over No. 6 Cal in a match where it dropped the doubles point but rallied to win four singles matches. On Friday afternoon, Stanford managed to get out to the early lead after securing the doubles point for the seventh time in eleven matches. Stanford's No. 2 team of Sameer Kumar and Michael Genender broke Texas's Harrison Scott and Julian Zlobinsky on the no-ad point to go ahead 3-2 and then they held for 4-2. Texas would come back from 0/40 down to hold for 3-4 but Stanford would hold from 40/30 and then break from 15/40 to win it 6-3.
The latest edition of the Big Slam was another classic with #41 Stanford upsetting #6 Cal 4-3 on Tuesday night at the Taube Family Tennis Stadium. Cal welcomed Filip Bergevi back into its singles and doubles lineup after he missed the last few weeks with an injury and his return paid off in doubles as he and Florian Lakat, who earlier in the day were elevated to the ITA's No. 1 doubles team, defeated Tom Fawcett and William Genensen at No. 1. Bergevi served for the match up 5-2 but he was broke on the no-ad point after Fawcett hit a second serve return winner. Fawcett held at love for 5-4 but Lakat would serve it out from 40/30 to give Cal the 6-4 win. Cal's Billy Griffith served for the match at No. 2 doubles up 5-3 (40/30) but Stanford broke on the no-ad point to make it 5-4. Down at No. 3, Cal's JT Nishimura was serving up 4-3 (40/0) but Stanford came back to break on the no-ad point for 4-4. Both of those courts would go to tiebreaks and Cal's Billy Griffith and Andre Goransson would clinch the doubles point with a 7-0 win at No. 2 while the match at No. 3 went unfinished with it tied at 1-1.
The 69th Blue Gray Tennis Classic came to an end on Saturday with the Rice men and Auburn women capturing titles by winning three matches in a 30-hour window. Rice started the day on Friday with a 4-0 win over Boise State and then Rice and Virginia Tech met in the semifinals with the doubles point played on Friday while singles was played Saturday morning. Rice only dropped two points in doubles and then the Owls won 9 of 11 sets in singles with David Warren clinching the 4-0 win. In Saturday afternoon's championship match, Rice took the doubles point with wins at No. 1 and No. 2 but then the teams split first sets in singles. South Carolina picked up straight set wins from Andrew Schafer and Alex Fennell while Rice's Tommy Bennett won in straight sets for Rice. With the match tied at 2-2 each of the remaining matches would be decided by few points late in the third set.
South Carolina's Yancy Dennis served for the match at No. 3 up 5-4 in the third but Rice's Jake Hansen broke back, held, and broke again to win 6-3, 4-6, 7-5 which put Rice ahead 3-2. Rice sophomore Eric Rutledge would clinch the match at No. 5 by breaking Thomas Mayronne's 4-4 third set service game and then serving the match out to take it 3-6, 6-2, 6-4. The match at No. 1 went unfinished with Rice's Jamie Malik leading 4-2 in the third set tiebreak after Malik had fought off two match points to force the tiebreak
The USTA released its top 25 on Wednesday with both the Virginia men and Florida women unanimous No. 1s. Ohio State and Wake Forest were unanimous No. 2 and No. 3 on the men's side while North Carolina and Cal were No. 4 and No. 5. The women's top three stayed the same while Stanford and Georgia swapped spots at No. 4 and No. 5.
Texas made the biggest jump on the men's side rising five spots to No. 9 while Northwestern took the biggest plunge falling seven spots to No. 13. There wasn't a whole lot of movement on the women's side with UCLA and Baylor each rising three spots to No. 14 and No. 19 respectively while no one fell more than two spots. TCU was the only team to go from unranked to ranked on the women's side with Northwestern dropping out.