Eagles swept by Idaho State, before a heartbreaking 6-1 loss to Weber State
The Eastern Washington University men’s tennis team had a tough weekend on the road, losing two matches to Idaho State and Weber State to kick off its 2013 Big Sky Conference campaign.
EWU suffered its first loss to the Bengals in more than seven years, as it fell 7-0 on Friday (Feb. 22) in Pocatello, Idaho.
The Eagles got off to a good start against the Wildcats on Sunday (Feb. 24) in Ogden, but after capturing the doubles point, EWU lost all six singles matches for a disheartening 6-1 defeat.
EWU is now 2-7 in the 2013 season.
In both matches this weekend, Eastern was without its No. 1 player for singles, as sophomore Joseph Cohen had to sit out due to injury.
“I was proud of the way the team bounced back after our loss to Idaho State,” said EWU head coach Darren Haworth. “We competed really well today against Weber, and probably could have won that match. When we’re at full strength, I think we can be a really good team this year.”
Against the Wildcats, EWU’s No. 3 pair of Tomas Aranguiz and Kyle Koetje defeated Weber State’s Anthony Trabert and Ryan Garner, 8-3.
At No. 2 doubles, freshmen Arturo Carpio and Eduardo Bringold fell to Todd Fought and Sanjay Goswami, 8-5, resulting in a must-win situation for Eastern’s No. 1 pair.
Cohen and sophomore Eduardo Martinez battled WSU’s Caio Poitena and Oliver Good in a thrilling tiebreaker, and ended up winning the match, 9-8 (7-4), giving EWU an early lead. But because of an injured hip, Cohen had to withdraw from singles play.
After shuffling the lineup, EWU had three freshmen competing in the first Big Sky Conference singles matches of their careers. Aranguiz and Bringold both managed to force a third set in their duals at No. 2 and 5, respectively, but were ultimately edged by the opponent.
After dropping his first set, 6-2, Aranguiz rallied for a 6-3 victory in the second, but WSU’s Fought had the edge in the third, winning with a 6-2 decision.
Bringold won his opening set against Goswami, 6-4, but dropped the subsequent two, 6-4, 6-0.
Martinez lost in straight sets at No. 1, as did freshman Luke Thompson at No. 4 and sophomore Stefan Farrar at No. 6.
On Friday against ISU, Eastern conceded the doubles point after an 8-2 loss at No. 1, and a very narrow loss at No. 3. Aranguiz and Koetje were edged in a tiebreaker, 8-7 (7-3).
In singles, Martinez also battled to a tiebreaker, but ended up falling to ISU’s Christian Marian, 7-6 (7-3), 6-1.
Aranguiz and Koetje suffered the exact same fate at No. 2 and 3 singles, as both players lost their matches by a score of 6-4, 6-2.
ISU’s Nate Gross defeated Bringold at No. 4, 6-1, 6-1, while his doubles partner, Carpio, also lost in straight sets at No. 6, 6-3, 6-1.
Playing in his third three-setter this season, Thompson was narrowly defeated at No. 5 by Jamey Swiggart, 6-2, 5-7, 1-0 (10-7).
Eastern will return to Cheney next weekend for two more Big Sky matches against Montana State and Northern Colorado. The Eagles play MSU on Friday (March 1) at 3 p.m. at the Jim Thorpe Fieldhouse before taking on the Bears Saturday (March 2) at 4 p.m.