Eastern records first win of Big Sky season, while earning seventh-consecutive victory against the Bears
The Eastern Washington University men’s tennis team split its pair of Big Sky home matches, recording a 5-2 victory over Northern Colorado on Saturday (March 2) after a tough 4-3 loss to Montana State on Friday (March 1).
The Eagles are now 3-9 on the season, and 1-3 in Big Sky Conference play. Northern Colorado drops to 1-2 in league, while the Bobcats remain atop the conference standings with an undefeated 4-0 mark.
In six seasons under head coach Darren Haworth, the Eagles are now 3-3 in regular-season matches against MSU and 7-0 versus Northern Colorado.
On Saturday against the Bears, Eastern was able to earn the early advantage on its home court, as the Eags took the doubles point with a pair of 8-6 victories at No. 2 and 3.
In singles action, sophomore Joseph Cohen earned his fifth win of the season at No. 1 when he downed UNC’s Brandon Lupo in straight sets, 6-4, 6-2.
Sophomore Tomas Aranguiz and senior Kyle Koetje, who won together as doubles partners earlier in the match, each picked up a win in singles as well. Aranguiz outlasted Jordan Loughnan in a tiebreaker at No. 3, 6-4, 7-6 (2), while Koetje bested Jeff Carlson at No. 4, 6-3, 6-1.
Freshman Eduardo Bringold had a solid performance against Michael Moya, earning a 6-3, 6-2 victory at No. 5 - his first of the year at that position.
Although the match was already clinched for EWU, the Bears did manage to earn two points with wins at No. 2 and 6 singles. UNC’s Ben Gendron prevailed in a three-set match over sophomore Eduardo Martinez, 6-4, 1-6, 7-5, and sophomore Stefan Farrar dropped his match at No. 6, 6-3, 6-4.
On Friday against the league-leading Bobcats, EWU found itself in an early hole after conceding the doubles point with losses at No. 1 and 2 - both by a score of 8-4.
Cohen was able to even the score when he cruised past MSU’s Niklas Brandes at No. 1, 6-3, 6-1.
Koetje, playing at No. 4 against Diego Campos, was the next to finish, as Koetje fell, 6-4, 6-4. But once again, EWU was able to make it up with a win at No. 2. After dropping his first set, Martinez battled back for a 7-6 (5), 6-1 victory.
Unfortunately, the Bobcats won the next two to clinch the match. Freshman Luke Thompson fell at No. 5, 6-1, 6-3, while Aranguiz was edged in a three-set match at No. 2. MSU’s Markus Schleuter rallied after losing the first set to win it, 2-6, 7-5, 6-4.
Although the match was already decided, Farrar did pick up an impressive win at No. 6, as he bested Prithiv Sivasubrmanaim, 7-6 (3), 6-4.
The Eagles will stay in Cheney for their next two matches, starting with a non-conference dual on Friday (March 8) against Pacific Lutheran.