Comets rebound from loss, secure conference dominance

Bilal Rahman | Mercury Staff

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The UTD men’s tennis team took down Ozarks 6-3 on March 29 and Howard Payne 9-0 on April 4 before falling to SMU 6-1 on April 7. This brought the Comets’ four game win streak to an end, although they still hold first place in the ASC East.  

Against Ozarks, the Comets opened the day by dropping the first two doubles games, before Noah Sam and Snehin Yerragudi won the third match 8-6. They bounced back by winning five of the six singles matches. All winners closed their matches in two sets. Snehin Yerragudi only dropped one game in total, and Benjamin Dubois lost just three. 

“I think singles are a strong suit,” Sam said. “It was a good match, and we’re happy to have come out on top.” 

Against Howard Payne, the Comets came out blazing, winning all three doubles matches in just two sets and all by a margin of at least 6 games. They continued their dominance in the singles matches, with only one HPU player winning more than one game.  

“It was a booster of how it feels to know that you’re good,” Sam said. “I don’t think we ever faltered even for one second.” 

The Comets’ momentum came to a halt with a tough 6-1 loss to SMU. The Division I team defeated UTD in all three doubles matches. The Comets lost in five of the six singles matches as well, with graduate student Jed De Luna providing the sole victory.  

“We knew it was gonna be a tough match,” Sam said. “It shows where we have to step up in terms of just match play.” 

After the conclusion of these matches a few Comets moved up the all-time leaderboards. De Luna is now third in career singles victories for UTD with 35. Senior Nick Boquet moved into a tie for eighth on the UTD doubles victory leaderboards with 24 wins. Dubois and Yerragudi built on their successful seasons and are now both 7-1 in singles this season. 

Sam emphasized the chemistry and friendship that he and the rest of the team have with one another, and the positive effect it has on the team’s performance.  

“Our camaraderie is very close knit this year compared to all the past years that I’ve been here,” Sam said. “I feel like that’s what kind of separates us from most teams in the ASC.” 

The Comets will travel to Abilene and look to bounce back against Hardin-Simmons on April 13, before returning home to face Concordia Texas the next day. 

“We know what kind of skill we have, what kind of powerhouse we have and what kind of bond that we have as a team and I think that’s what really scares our opponents this year,” Sam said. “I think this is the year that we’re going to win it all.” 


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