No. 23 Texas Tech Hosts No. 25 Texas A&M For Final Time
Gabriel Wanderley and the Red Raiders will face Aggies at 6 p.m. on Saturday.
April 5, 2012
LUBBOCK, Texas – Last week No. 23 Texas Tech pulled off this improbable with its win over Baylor, this week they say goodbye to a long-time rival in No. 25 Texas A&M.
The Red Raiders (12-6, 1-0 Big 12) host the Aggies (12-9, 1-1 Big 12) Saturday night at 6 p.m. at the McLeod Tennis Center. Admission is free and there will be free food, prizes and an Easter egg hunt. Also the first 100 fans will receive a Texas Tech t-shirt.
“We cannot let down or be complacent after our win over Baylor,” said Red Raider head coach Tim Siegel. “Although that was an important win for us and our program, each time we play a ranked opponent it is important. Add on to that the rivalry between Texas A&M and Texas Tech, you have recipe for an exciting match that I think our guys are ready for.”
Texas Tech will be looking for its first win over Texas A&M since March 22, 2008, when the No. 21 Red Raiders knocked off the No. 19 Aggies, 4-3, at the McLeod Tennis Center. The Aggies have won five straight against the Red Raiders.
The Red Raiders have gone 6-2 since Siegel shook up the doubles lineup after the Mississippi State match in Montgomery, Ala. During that stretch, Texas Tech has gone won five of seven doubles points. The Red Raiders did not play doubles against Midwestern State. The Red Raiders won the doubles point just twice in eight matches prior to the lineup change.
The key to the entire lineup change are seniors Raony Carvalho and Gonzalo Escobar, who have teamed to go 7-0 at No. 1 doubles and vault to No. 28 in the nation during the same span. Rafael Garcia and Vitor Manzini have gone 4-3 at No. 2 doubles, while doubles by committee has gone 4-3 at No. 3.
In singles action, the Red Raiders’ top three athletes are all riding five-match winning streaks. No. 1 singles is paced by Escobar, who is ranked No. 57 nationally and has racked up a 26-10 record (1-0 Big 12). Carvalho, who is ranked No. 96 at No. 2, is 12-5 on the season, while Garcia, has gone 11-5 at No. 3 and 14-12 overall.
Manzini has gone 17-7 and has solidified the No. 4 spot in the lineup, while Gabriel Wanderley (12-8) and Raphael Pfister (15-9) have rotated at the No. 5 spot. Freshman Francisco Zambon (9-8) has solidified the No. 6 spot for Texas Tech.
Texas A&M has secured Top 25 wins over Mississippi State, Texas and Baylor. The Aggies are led by No. 29 Alexis Klegou and No. 103 John Lewis in singles play. Junior Ore and Jackson Withrow are ranked 30th at No. 1 doubles.