Big Sky Conference Standings
GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- Sacramento State received straight-set wins from Roy Brandys, Niranjan Ram, Joaquin Marquez, Oliver Andersen and Alejandro Villarreal to defeat North Dakota, 6-1, in a Big Sky Conference men's tennis match Friday afternoon at the Choice Health and Fitness Center.
The Hornets (8-12, 5-3) won for the sixth time in their last nine matches, and moved into a tie for fourth place in the Big Sky standings with just two conference matches remaining. Sacramento State will play those final league matches tomorrow at Northern Colorado and Sunday at Northern Arizona.
The top six teams in the 11-member league qualify for the Big Sky Tournament, and the Hornets will likely need just one more win to clinch a spot depending on other results from around the league over the next two weeks. This year's Big Sky Tournament will take place April 25-27 at the Gold River Racquet Club, and the Hornets have won each of the last five conference tournament titles.
Sacramento State began things by winning all three doubles matches to pick up the point as the tandems of Brandys/Ram (9-8 at No. 1), Andersen/Villarreal (8-6 at No. 2) and Ayman Abdulwahab/Marquez (8-3 at No. 3) were each victorious.
In singles play, Brandys won his match at No. 1 (6-4, 6-4), Ram at No. 2 (6-0, 7-5), Marquez at No. 3 (6-0, 6-1), Andersen at No. 4 (6-3, 6-3) and Villarreal at No. 6 (6-4, 6-4). Abdulwahab lost his match at No. 5 by a 7-6, 6-0 score.
Both Ram and Brandys have now won three straight singles matches and they both improved to 7-1 against conference competition this season.
Including its matches against Northern Colorado and Northern Arizona this weekend, the Hornets have just four contests remaining on the regular season schedule.