UCSB tennis had another up-and- down weekend, losing two of the three but coming up big on Sunday against the University of San Diego, who were ranked #62 in the nation. Behind the big serve and steady progression of junior co-captain Josh Finkelstein, the Gauchos have been able to secure a fourth-place seeding in the Big West tournament coming up later this month. Head Coach Marty Davis is excited with the play of his junior star.
“Josh Finkelstein is all the way up to number two in singles,” Davis said. “And he continues to play well. He’s compiling one hell of a record this season.”
Of his own play, Finkelstein attributed it to coming up big on some key plays, as well as a bit of luck.
“I’m just playing really clutch tennis this year,” Finkelstein said. “I don’t know how else to put it. I’ve been down in a lot of matches and found some way to win. But a lot of it’s luck, too. Hopefully being lucky continues.”
To help him win those big matches, Finkelstein has relied on his consistent serving.
“My serving the whole year has been something I’ve been able to fall back on,” Finkelstein said.
“No matter what, I could hold serve.”
The Sunday match against University of San Diego was also important for a reason other than the all-important Big West conference seeding. For UCSB, it was the first time the team pulled out the doubles point to begin the match in their last seven contests.
“The big news was that we won the doubles point, which we hadn’t in seven or eight matches,” Davis said. “It was nice to be on the right end of the 4-3 match for once.”
Sophomore Alex Konigsfeldt, Finkelstein’s doubles partner at number one, was very satisfied.
“Today we played really good doubles, I think,” Konigsfeldt said. “We broke to win the match, so that was pretty good, too. It was nice to win the doubles point. It makes a huge difference.”
UCSB will try to continue this late season upswing this Saturday, senior day, when they play Loyloa Marymount in the final match of the regular season. After that, they go to the Big West tournament, where they will face off against rival UC Davis to open the event.