It was a road trip to forget for IU men’s tennis, after the team lost both its matches in Austin, Texas, at the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Kick-Off Weekend. The losses drop the Hoosiers’ record to 2-2 for the season.
The weekend woes began Saturday against the defending national champions, No. 1 University of Texas at Austin. Boasting a roster with three ranked singles players and four ranked doubles pairs, Texas proved too much for IU, winning the day 4-0.
The Hoosiers fought for the doubles point, coming a tiebreak away from starting the day ahead 1-0.
IU’s top doubles pair, Bennett Crane and Zac Brodney, went up against No. 4 Christian Sigsgaard and Yuya Ito. Crane and Brodney fell behind early and could never recover, losing to Sigsgaard and Ito 6-1.
Carson Haskins and William Piekarsky fared better, taking down Siem Woldeab and Eliot Spizzirri 6-3.
Patrick Fletchall and Payam Ahmadi battled for the Hoosiers, taking Chih Chi Huang and Cleeve Harper to a tiebreak before falling 7-4.
Things didn’t improve for IU in the singles matches.
The Hoosiers' top singles player, No. 66 Crane, wasn’t active in the singles round. This left Brodney to face the Longhorns’ top player, No. 2 Ito. Brodney could never get a foothold against Ito, losing 6-3, 6-2.
If nothing else, IU’s roster had the opportunity to face more ranked competition against Texas.
Haskins faced No. 13 Sigsgaard in a match that went unfinished, Sigsgaard leading 6-3, 3-2. Freshman Luka Vukovic saw his first action for the Hoosiers, losing to No. 53 Woldeab 6-1, 6-2.
The Hoosiers came out strong on Sunday against Vanderbilt University., taking the doubles point in the first two matches, a 6-2 win by Fletchall and Ahmadi and 6-3 from Haskins and Piekarsky.
Despite IU having the momentum following the doubles matches, the overall score quickly turned during singles play.
Haskins was the only Hoosier to win the first set. He went on to win his match 6-3, 6-3, tying the match at 2-2 after losses by Andrew Redding and Vikash Singh.
After Vanderbilt took a 3-2 lead, Crane and Fletchall both fought to keep IU alive. Fletchall forced a third set while Crane went to a tiebreak in the second.
There would be no repeat of Crane’s heroics from last week’s match against the University of Memphis. Crane lost the tiebreak 7-5, ending IU’s weekend.
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Its plan was announced Wednesday afternoon.
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Workouts began June 15 but were paused July 17.