Raony Carvalho, Gonzalo Escobar Set Another Texas Tech Standard
June 7, 2012
LUBBOCK, Texas – When you talk about rankings and records in the context of Texas Tech men’s tennis, most likely the conversation will turn to the program’s two winningest players of all-time – Raony Carvalho and Gonzalo Escobar.
On Thursday, the Intercollegiate Tennis Association announced its men’s final Top 125 singles and Top 90 doubles rankings. It was of no surprise that Carvalho and Escobar graced the national polls one last time, but this time in record-setting fashion.
The Texas Tech men’s tandem jumped all the way from No. 18 to No. 3 in the final rankings after playing the role of underdogs and making the charge to the national finals of the NCAA Doubles Championships in May. It is the highest ranking of any kind for Texas Tech Red Raider Tennis. It eclipses the highest team (No. 9), singles (No. 6) or doubles (No. 7) mark ever recorded by a team from the South Plains.
The previously highest ranked doubles team came on Jan. 6, 2009, when Carvalho teamed with Christian Rojmar to earn a No. 7 national ranking. Carvalho and Rojmar finished the 2009 season ranked 13th. In fact, Carvalho has been a part of four of the top five ranked doubles tandems in program history, after earning a No. 23 ranking with Rafael Garcia in 2010 and a No. 25 ranking with Garcia in 2011.
Escobar also saw his singles ranking jump from No. 40 nationally to No. 27, after advancing to the Sweet Sixteen in the NCAA Singles Championships. Carvalho ended the season ranked 78th nationally. It marked the third straight season that Escobar has been ranked nationally and the fourth straight year that Carvalho has been ranked in the nation’s Top 80.
Texas Tech has had at least two players ranked in the ITA Singles Top 125 for six consecutive years and has had at least one player ranked nationally in the final singles poll every year since 2003.
Regionally in singles, Escobar was ranked second, while Carvalho came in at No. 4. Joining them in the rankings was junior Vitor Manzini, who earned a No. 17 regional ranking for Texas Tech.
In the ITA Texas Region doubles rankings, Escobar and Carvalho ranked No. 1, while the previous pairings of Escobar and Manzini ranked No. 8 and Carvalho and Garcia were No. 10.