LOGAN — Capped by a nearly three-hour singles match at the No. 6 position, the Utah State men’s tennis team ended its home season in a 4-3 loss to Idaho State on Wednesday at the Logan Sports Academy and Racquet Club.
In the wake of a tendon injury ending freshman Matt Sweet’s season, sophomore Brandon Nielsen has stepped up, playing in the last three matches. Wednesday’s final score came down to his match against ISU’s Andres Coello. After pushing the match through a third set, it all ended in a tough tie-breaker (6-2, 5-7, 7-6 [13-11]).
Singles competition followed a tough round of doubles action, where the Aggies were swept by the Bengals. At the No. 1 position, junior Sven Poslusny and freshman Marcus Fritz were taken down by Charles Norman and Dakota Pate (8-5). Sophomore Andrew Whiting and junior Lenny Whiting fell to Dan Buckingham and Nate Gross (8-6), while Nielsen and senior Nate Ballam were defeated by Coello and Krzysztof Stempien (8-6).
Poslusny got singles play started with a straight-set win over Norman (6-3, 6-3). Fritz followed at the No. 2 position, defeating Stempien in three sets (6-3, 3-6, 6-1). Lenny Whiting was defeated by Gross (6-1, 6-1), but Ballam was next, taking down Miller in a tight three sets (6-2, 4-6, 7-6). Freshman Curran Wearmouth followed the three-set trend, but fell to Buckingham (7-6, 1-6, 6-3) at the No. 5 position.
With the loss, the Aggies fell to 5-12, heading into the last match of the season. The Bengals improved to 8-11 with the win.
Both Aggie tennis teams will head to Reno, Nev., this weekend where they will take on Western Athletic Conference foe Nevada in the final matches of the season. The men play Friday at noon, followed by the women on Saturday at 11 a.m.
The 2012 WAC Tournament will be hosted by New Mexico State University in Las Cruces, N.M. Women’s action will start Thursday, April 26, and men will begin competition Friday, April 27.
Fans can follow Utah State athletics, including both USU tennis teams, at http://twitter.com/USUAthletics or on Facebook at Utah State University Athletics.
Idaho State 4, Utah State 3
1. Sven Poslusny (USU) def. Charles Norman (ISU) 6-3, 6-3
2. Marcus Fritz (USU) def. Krzysztof Stempien (ISU) 6-3, 3-6, 6-1
3. Nate Gross (ISU) def. Lenny Whiting (USU) 6-1, 6-1
4. Nate Ballam (USU) def. Austin Miller (ISU) 6-2, 4-6, 7-6
5. Dan Buckingham (ISU) def. Curran Wearmouth (USU) 7-6, 1-6, 6-3
6. Andres Coello (ISU) def. Brandon Nielsen (USU) 6-2, 5-7, 7-6 (13-11)
1. Charles Norman/Dakota Pate (ISU) def. Sven Poslusny/Marcus Fritz (USU) 8-5
2. Dan Buckingham/Nate Gross (ISU) def. Andrew Whiting/Lenny Whiting (USU) 8-6
3. Andres Coello/Krzysztof Stempien (ISU) def. Nate Ballam/Brandon Nielsen (USU) 8-6
Doug Hoffman is the assistant athletic director for Utah State University Athletic Media Relations.