The TCU men’s tennis team dropped its second home match 5-2 Saturday against No. 22 Texas Tech in the indoor complex at the Bayard H. Friedman Tennis Center.
Head coach David Roditi said the Red Raiders’ ability to stay focused on their strategy was the key to their win.
“I think their ability to focus on the strategies in the key moments was the difference between them winning [and] us [winning] today,” Roditi said. “That usually comes from being in the situation many, many times.”
TCU took a one-point lead after winning two of the three doubles matches to start the day.
Senior Daniel Sanchez and sophomore Max Stevens took care of their match 8-4 against juniors Raphael Pfister and Gabriel Wanderley to give the Frogs the early edge. Texas Tech quickly recovered with seniors Raony Carvalho and Rafael Garcia taking their contest 8-4 over junior JT Sundling and freshman Will Stein.
The longest doubles match turned out to be the deciding factor in which team took the early lead. The Chappell brothers (Nick, freshman, and Paul, senior) forced a tiebreaker against Texas Tech junior Vitor Manzini and senior Gonzalo Escobar after trailing most of the match.
The tiebreaker was back and forth, but the Chappell brothers won three points in a row to pull out a 7-5 win and gave the Frogs a much needed 1-0 lead.
The Red Raiders tied it up at 1-1 after No. 23 Escobar took down Sundling in straight sets (6-3, 6-2). TCU bounced back, though, taking the center court matchup between Nick Chappell and Carvalho (2-6, 6-4, 6-4) to go ahead 2-1 .
The Frogs’ lead did not last long with Texas Tech taking quick, back-to-back matches. Garcia took down Sanchez (6-3, 3-6, 6-3) , and Manzini beat freshman Facundo Lugones (6-4, 5-7, 6-2) after Lugones took a hard-fought second set.
Freshman Francisco Zambon swept Paul Chappell (6-3, 6-0), and Stein fell to Wanderley (8-4) in the final match as TCU lost 5-2 to the Red Raiders at home.
The Frogs’ record dropped to 2-4 and Texas Tech moved to 5-2 on the season.
Nick played his first competitive doubles match with his brother, Paul. He said he was glad to win his two matches but really wanted to knock off a ranked opponent.
“It feels pretty good,” Nick said. “I wish we could have gotten a team win.”
Roditi said TCU fans were doing a good job of showing up to matches but wanted them to be louder because it could make a big difference.
“It really helps the guys when they get behind [the players] and they get loud,” he said. “I think that really helped Nick. The crowd really got behind Nick.”