Men’s Tennis Upsets Mississippi Teams Over the Holiday Weekend
Alabama men's tennis racked up huge wins over No. 9 Ole Miss and No. 15 Mississippi State within three days over the holiday weekend.
The first of the two upsets started on Friday with the Mississippi State Bulldogs coming to town. Fifth-year senior Edson Ortiz matched up against MSU's Giovanni Orandini, with Orandini taking the first match, 6-1. Ortiz won the last two sets with a score of 7-5 and 6-4. Fellow seniors Zhe Zhou, Gabriel Diaz Freire, Alexey Nesterov and Jeremy Gschwendter secured their matches and the double points to give the Tide the 5-2 win over the Bulldogs on senior night.
After the victory on senior night, coach George Husack stated how proud he was of the seniors and why the win was so special.
"Tonight was so special," Husack stated. "Honoring a large senior class that has made such a positive impact to our program was both necessary and memorable. And then to see seniors lead us to victory was icing on the cake."
On Sunday, Alabama traveled to Oxford to take on the No. 9 Ole Miss Rebels. The Tide fell behind 0-2 early to the Rebels after winning the four singles and doubles point; however, the Crimson Tide came storming back with Zhe Zhou, Edson Ortiz and Riccardo Roberto to help put Bama in the lead, 3-2. The Rebels victory in court two tied the game at 3-3. Senior Jeremy Gschwendter lost the first match but rebounded with victories in the last two sets to seal the team win (4-3) over the Rebels.
Coach Husack said the team would enjoy the victories until Tuesday as "the process of doing better is far from over."
Alabama is 13-8 on the season with triple victories over top 15 opponents. The Tide went 1-4 in the previous five games and postponed last week's matchups against Texas A&M and LSU. The Tide will try to continue the win streak as they travel to Fayetteville, Arkansas, to take on the Hogs before the SEC Championship starts on April 19-23.