MEN'S TENNIS FALLS JUST SHORT IN 4-3 LOSS TO No. 31 TULSA
TULSA, Okla. — Sacramento State senior Kiryl Harbatsiuk defeated the 21st ranked player in Div. I in straight sets but the Hornets came up just short in a 4-3 loss to Tulsa, Friday evening at the Case Tennis Center.
The loss snapped Sacramento State's three-match win streak and dropped the team to 3-3 on the season. The 31st-ranked Golden Hurricane improved to 7-2 overall.
The doubles point proved costly for the Hornets as they were never able to overcome the deficit. The team captured the first win when Holden Ching and Jason Smith defeated Marko Ballok and Alastair Barnes, 8-2, at No. 2. However, Tulsa evened the doubles score with an 8-5 win at No. 3 where Grant Ive and Rusty Turpin downed Tim Lantin and Marko Starcevic.
The deciding point came in a hard-fought battle at No. 1. Tulsa's Philip Stephens and Ashley Watling held on for a win over Harbatsiuk and Anton Stryhas, 8-6, to give TU the doubles point.
Sacramento State fell behind 3-0 at the start of singles play after dropping the two matches at the bottom of the ladder. Ive defeated Ching, 6-2, 6-4, at No. 5 and Tristan Jackson handed Lantin a 6-4, 6-1 loss at No. 6.
From that point, the Hornets rallied to pull within one, 3-2. Starcevic earned the first win with a 6-3, 6-4, victory over Ballok — in a battle of Marko's — at No. 4. Harbatsiuk then added the upset over Watling (who entered ranked 21st nationally), 6-3, 6-3 at No. 2.
Any chance of a Sacramento State comeback was dashed in the No. 1 match where Stephens defeated Stryhas, 6-3, 7-5.
Smith closed out the night with a straight set win over Barnes at No. 3. In the match, Smith won the first set, 6-3, and then secured the win in the second set with an 11-9 decision in the tie break.
Sacramento State will remain in Tulsa to face No. 30 Oklahoma State on Saturday at 4 p.m. PST.
#31 Tulsa 4, Sacramento State 3
1. Philip Stephens (TLS) def. STRYHAS, Anton (SAC) 6-3, 7-5
2. HARBATSIUK, Kiryl (SAC) def. #21 Ashley Watling (TLS) 6-3, 6-3
3. SMITH, Jason (SAC) def. Alastair Barnes (TLS) 6-3, 7-6 (11-9)
4. STARCEVIC, Marko (SAC) def. Marko Ballok (TLS) 6-3, 6-4
5. Grant Ive (TLS) def. CHING, Holden (SAC) 6-2, 6-4
6. Tristan Jackson (TLS) def. LANTIN, Tim (SAC) 6-4, 6-1
1. Philip Stephens/Ashley Watling (TLS) def. HARBATSIUK, Kiryl/STRYHAS, Anton (SAC) 8-6
2. CHING, Holden/SMITH, Jason (SAC) def. Marko Ballok/Alastair Barnes (TLS) 8-2
3. Grant Ive/Rusty Turpin (TLS) def. LANTIN, Tim/STARCEVIC, Marko (SAC) 8-5
Sacramento State 3-3
Tulsa 7-2; National ranking #31
Order of finish: Doubles (2,3,1); Singles (5,6,4,2,1,3)