April 3, 2014
HOUSTON, Texas – Rice University men’s tennis fell in a tightly contested 4-3 match against league rival UTSA before rebounding for a decisive 5-1 victory over Abilene Christian on Thursday evening.
In the opening match, the Owls’ (8-11) doubles pairing of Max Andrews and Adam Gustafsson topped UTSA’s 29th-ranked top duo, 8-4. However, it wasn’t enough to overcome a pair of setbacks on the second and third courts, at 8-7 and 8-2, respectively.
Just before most courts completed one set in the singles, rain moved into the area and forced a suspension of the match. The teams moved indoors to the downtown MET to complete the match.
Gustafsson and Andrews then suffered three-set defeats on Courts 2 and 3, but an impressive 4-6, 7-6 (7-2), 6-3 win by Srikar Alla on Court 1 to even the score at 3-3 for the match.
It came down to the third set on Court 4, where Diogo Casa outlasted Rice’s David Warren for the 5-7, 6-3, 6-4 win and the match.
In the nightcap, the Owls claimed 5-of-6 singles matches at The MET and the squads did not face off in doubles.
Four Rice players topped their Wildcat opponents in straight sets, including Gustafsson on Court 2 (6-1, 6-1), Andrews on Court 3 (6-0, 6-1), Court 4’s Warren (6-3, 6-4) and Munch on Court 6 (6-5 with a 7-3 tiebreak, 6-2).
Alla capped off a solid day with a resilient 3-6, 6-1, 6-4 win on Court 1 for the Owls and Gonzalez suffered Rice’s lone defeat of the night. After a dominating 6-1 opening set win, the sophomore fell 6-3, 6-3 in the final sets.
The Owls have a week to prepare for a regular season finale road trip. Rice heads to the Metroplex to face TCU next Saturday (April 12) and SMU the following day.