The men’s tennis team fell 5-2 to UMBC Saturday afternoon at the Student Pavilion.
The Owls drop to 6-11 on the season (4-3 Atlantic 10 Conference). The Terriers (8-8, 1-1 America East Conference) broke a two-match losing streak.
“I thought we played, actually, pretty well today,” coach Steve Mauro said. “UMBC’s a tough opponent. Even though the score was 5-2, there were so many close matches out there today.”
In a lengthy top-flight match, sophomore Hernan Vasconez defeated freshman Justin Carter 7-6 (10-8), 3-6, 7-5. Sophomore Kristian Marquart fell 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 to freshman Melker Svard in the second flight.
“I was happy for Hernan’s win at one,” Mauro said. “I think that was a great win for him.”
In the third flight, freshman Santiago Canete lost to freshman Alex Drean 6-4, 6-3. Freshman Hicham Belkssir dropped a 6-4, 6-4 decision to senior Gaulthier Berret in flight four.
In flight five, freshman Nicolas Paulus topped sophomore Kamal Patel 6-3, 2-6, 1-0 (10-8) Freshman Sam Rundle lost 7-5, 6-1 to sophomore Daniel Gray in the sixth flight.
In doubles play, Vasconez and Belkssir fell 8-1 to Carter and Berret in flight one. In the third flight, Paulus and freshman Maros Januvka fell 8-5 to Drean and Gray. The second flight match, pitting Marquart and Rundle against Patel and Svard, was ended early with the Temple duo leading 7-3.
Both of Temple’s points came in three set victories. Mauro does not think that speaks to the Owls’ stamina.
“I don’t know so much stamina, but I think it’s experience,” Mauro said. “Towards the beginning of the season, I think those guys would have lost those tiebreakers. Because we’ve pushed these players and made them play higher in the lineup, I think it’s really helping their experience.”
Temple closes out its regular season against Rider at 2 p.m. on Monday, April 22 at the Student Pavilion.
Evan Cross can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @EvanCross.