In its first match versus a ranked opponent this season, No. 45 BYU men’s tennis fell to No. 8 Kentucky, 4-0, in the semifinal match of the ITA Kick-Off Weekend at the Hilary J. Boone Varsity Tennis Center on Friday.
“I thought we put up a good fight against a very good team this afternoon,” BYU head coach Brad Pearce said. “I was pleased with the effort. We were down a key man in Frankie (Sargeant), and Andrey (Goryachkov) is coming back from a sprained ankle. But we hope to have both of them ready for tomorrow against either Notre Dame or Minnesota.”
The Cougars (4-1) suffered their first loss of the season at the hands of the Wildcats (5-0) while playing without team captain Francis Sargeant.
Kentucky claimed the doubles point in the first part of the match. Freshmen Juan Canales and Sterling Galli were defeated by Alejandro Gomez and Beck Pennington, 6-1. Fellow freshmen Matthew Pearce and Jacob Sullivan had similar fortunes, falling 6-2 to their opponents.
Sophomore Andrey Goryachkov led off in the first singles spot in his match versus No. 68 Tom Jomby, losing in a hard-fought effort, 6-4, 6-4.
Three of BYU’s freshmen each came up with solid efforts in singles as well. Pearce and Canales fell to their opponents, while Jeremy Bourgeois faced Pennington, taking him into tiebreakers in the first set, 6-5 (6), and playing to a 2-2 tie before the match was called.
The Cougars are back in action Saturday at 1 p.m. EST as the ITA Kick-Off Weekend continues. They will face the match winner of No. 29 Notre Dame versus No. 39 Minnesota.
Live stats of the match can be followed on Kentucky’s athletics website.
McKay Perry is the sports information director for BYU men's and women's tennis. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org