The No. 62 UCSB men’s tennis team swept Westmont College 7-0 on Saturday, improving to 4-2 on the year and 2-0 at home. It was the first sweep for Santa Barbara this season as it dropped the Warriors to 0-1.
“This is a nice way to finish the first segment of our season,” Head Coach Marty Davis said. “We got some work to do, but things are going well … it was a comfortable win for us.”
The Gauchos started out strong by winning all three doubles matches. On the No. 1 court, senior Mathieu Forget and junior Mbonisi Ndimande won 8-3, while freshman Greg Scott and junior Alex Johnson teamed up for the first time and won 9-8 in the No. 2 spot. Junior Benjamin Recknagel and freshman Ziad Sultan won handily 8-1 at No. 3.
“It was a pretty good day … we got off to a pretty good start in doubles,” Recknagel said. “We won all matches pretty easily.”
Recknagel continued to play well in the No. 1 singles position, where he defeated Bryan Cox 6-2, 6-0. At No. 2, Forget won 6-4, 6-2 over Rodrigo Schaefer, and Scott defeated Tim Goranson 6-1, 6-4 at No. 3.
The other matches also only took two sets. No. 4 singles saw Ndimande beat Joshua Barnard 6-2, 6-1, and sophomore Alexander Gryaznov played in the No. 5 spot for the first time this year, defeating John Bertram 6-2, 6-2. Freshman Mons Knudtzon won his debut over Nicholas Szyndlar 6-2, 6-4 at No. 6.
“It went pretty much according to plan,” Gryaznov said. “It was pretty easy overall for everyone … I thought I played pretty well, it wasn’t too bad of a match.”
Despite having the advantage of playing five matches in the past two weeks to Westmont’s zero, Gryaznov doesn’t think that factored into the results at all.
“They actually have two seasons for NAIA … they could have been a bit not ready, but we still would have won if it was mid-season,” Gryaznov said.
Santa Barbara should maintain its national ranking after making its first appearance last week and knows each win gives them the chance to keep moving up.
After six matches in 15 days, UCSB now has 13 days between matches, its longest break in the schedule aside from finals week.
“We’re going to take a couple days off to rest, recover and deal with some injuries and then get back into training pretty hard,” Gryaznov said. “It’s pretty nice having [more than] a week off after a pretty hectic start.”
The Gauchos return to action at Oregon on Feb. 11 and at Washington on Feb. 12 for a pair of indoor matches.