No. 43 Utah State men's tennis (7-5, 1-0 Mountain West) lost, 4-3, to Denver (5-5, 2-1 Summit League) on Monday in Colorado.
"Denver played very hard and took it to us today," head coach James Wilson said. "I'm disappointed in the way we dealt with some situations. We have to grow and continue to get better."
In doubles, sophomore Sergiu Bucur and freshman Felipe Acosta lost, 1-6, at the No. 3 spot against Denver freshman Jorge Nunez and senior Wyatt Lovera. USU freshmen Jose Carvajal and Valdemar Holm won, 6-3, at the No. 2 spot against sophomore Pedro Fernandez Del Valle and freshman Mattia Ros. Aggie seniors Jaime Barajas and Andrew Nakajima lost, 4-6, at the No. 1 spot against senior Jesse Ruder-Hook and freshman Matt Summers, as Denver won the doubles point.
In singles, Barajas lost, 2-6, 2-6, at the No. 1 spot against Ros. Del Valle then defeated freshman Addy Vashisthaat the No. 6 spot, 6-1, 6-4. Ruder-Hook clinched the win for the Pioneers with a 7-5, 6-3 win at the No. 3 spot over Holm.
In other singles action, Acosta never dropped a game in his first set at the No. 5 spot against junior Ignatius Castelino, winning 6-0. Castelino came back to win the second set, 6-1. However, Acosta won the match with a 6-1 third-set victory. Carvajal posted a 6-4 first-set victory at the No. 4 spot against freshman Eric Morris. Morris then won the second set, 6-4. Carvajal dropped just two points during a 10-point tiebreak in the third set to win the match, 10-2. Bucur lost his first set at the No. 2 spot, 4-6, against Summers, but he won the second, 6-3. Bucur won the match in a 10-point tiebreak in the third, 11-9.
Utah State next travels to Tampa, Florida, where the Aggies will take on No. 38 Old Dominion (8-5, 0-0 Conference USA) on Friday, March 9, at 7 a.m. MT; George Washington (0-12, 0-1 Atlantic 10) on Saturday, March 10, at 8 a.m.; and South Florida (2-7, 0-1 American) on Sunday, March 11, at 8 a.m.
Ashley Springer is a student at Utah State University studying journalism and communication. Springer is an intern with the USU athletic department's media relations.