Tritons off to a swinging start

    The UCSD men’s tennis team is off to a solid start this season, netting a 2-1 record at the UC Challenge in Irvine, Calif., falling to UC Irvine before picking up a pair of wins over UC Riverside and UC Davis.

    The Division II Tritons left campus on Jan. 31 and squared off against Division I UCI on Feb. 1, fighting a tough match to the end as they fell 4-3 to the Anteaters. In doubles, the Tritons won two of three with senior Michael Meyer and junior Sean Nagel winning 9-8, followed by junior Jeff Wilson and sophomore Nick Morton securing the doubles point with an 8-2 victory. UCSD’s only doubles loss came against the No. 11-ranked pair in the nation, UCI’s team of Jonathan Endrikat and Brian Morton, winning a close match (8-6) over sophomore Bryan Swatt and junior Sameer Chopra.

    In singles, Swatt and sophomore Emil Novak won their own matches and picked up two more points, while UCI rallied back, winning three matches to tie the score at 3-3. The deciding point came down to the last match, in which Anteater Peter Surapol defeated junior Blake Wilson-Hayden (7-6, 6-4), giving the Anteaters a 4-3 win over the Tritons.

    UCSD bounced back in its second match, sweeping Division I UC Riverside 7-0. The doubles teams of Chopra/Wilson, Swatt/Nagel, and the Novak brothers, Emil and Tomas, came out on top on all three matches with scores of 8-4, 8-6 and 8-0, respectively.

    Chopra, Wilson, Emil Novak, Wilson-Hayden, Nagel and Doug Hoffman continued the sweep, winning each of their singles matches.

    “”We had a couple of close matches there [Wilson’s (2-6, 6-4, 7-6), Emil Novak’s (6-4,7-6), and Wilson-Hayden’s (7-5, 3-6, 6-4)], and I was happy with our guys, they competed all the way through. It was really good,”” said UCSD head coach Eric Steidlmayer.

    On Feb. 2, the team defeated UC Davis 6-3 to finish off the UC Challenge, earning their first win over a Division II opponent. UCSD took two of three in doubles with Chopra/Swatt winning 8-6 and Wilson/Morton winning 8-0. The Tritons took four of six points in singles with Wilson, Swatt, Emil Novak and Wilson-Hayden victorious, capping off the Tritons’ victory over the Aggies.

    The men’s tennis team is now 2-1 overall and 1-0 in the California Collegiate Athletic Association. Up next, the Tritons will head to Pomona, Calif., for the Cal Poly Pomona Team Tournament Feb. 14 through Feb. 16.

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