It was a happy day for the UC Davis men’s tennis team at the Gael Classic last Saturday.
The Aggies pulled out some very hard-fought wins against the competition at the event. Head coach Daryl Lee was pleased with the results of his players.
The doubles team of Nick Lopez and Toki Sherbakov topped second seed California before falling to San Francisco in the second round. In singles play, sophomore Connor Coates, junior Chris Aria and Sherbakov each had good singles performances.
All three topped their first-round opponents with Aria pulling off a comeback victory over against St. Mary’s Sharif Hamdy. Aria came back from a 2-7 deficit in the third set tiebreak to win the match.
A key to Aria’s comeback was his endurance. Lee believes this was also key to the Aggies’ success this weekend.
“What was challenging about Saturday was that many players competed four times in one day,” Lee said. “We were at the courts for over 12 hours.”
The format of the matches had to be modified to fit them all into one day due to threatening weather conditions.
Above all, Lee was proud of how the Aggies conducted themselves throughout the matches.
“Many players often find ways to lose a match, using their frustration as an excuse to give up,” he said. “We did well to stay focused and figure out how to pull through.” UC Davis will take a break until January when dual meets begin.
RON HOOPER can be reached at email@example.com.