What a breathtaking way to wrap up the fall season.

The UCSB men’s tennis team dominated in its final preseason tournament, the Cal Poly Big West Shootout, without any trouble last weekend in San Luis Obispo.

Four top schools participated in the tournament, including the Gauchos, Riverside, University of the Pacific and Cal Poly. This is the first year the tournament has been held, and instead of a standard tournament draw, the competition was set up as a round robin event in which every team played one another once. Evidently, based on Santa Barbara’s accomplishments, it was obvious that the Gauchos were the leading “aces” as they triumphed in winning most of their matches.

“Our guys definitely sent a message to our Big West Conference,” UCSB Head Coach Marty Davis said. “We are undoubtedly ready and prepared to defend our title.”

The men’s tennis team truly exhibited their depth in singles play, winning five out of six matches against Riverside, and four of six matches against Cal Poly and University of the Pacific. Yet the Gauchos unfortunately only won three of their nine doubles matches.

Freshman Nicholas Edlefsen stood out for Santa Barbara, losing just 10 games in his three singles matches (6 sets).

“Nick was remarkably impressive,” Davis said. “It’s unusual and encouraging to see a freshman achieve such success so early in the year.”

Freshmen Elad Stern and Chris Wetzig also played admirably as they cruised through the tournament undefeated in singles play. Overall, The Gauchos had come out on top, as they played competitively to complete their final tournament with much self-assurance and confidence.

“This was a great end to our fall season,” Davis said. “It’s terrific to end the season on a winning note. It gives us a lift going into the Winter Break, and it also gives us a reason to look forward to the upcoming season with much enthusiasm.”