The UCSB men’s tennis team takes on St. John’s University today at 1:30 p.m. at the tennis courts behind the Recreational Center. The Gauchos will be looking to build on their 3-7 record and keep momentum after defeating Pacific on Sunday, 6-1.
“The team was really excited after the win [against Pacific],” freshman Teague Hamilton said. “We hope it’s the start of good things to come and we hope to keep the ball rolling all the way to the Big West Championships.”
The Gauchos will depend on junior Tobias Galskov to continue his run of strong play; since being moved to the top singles spot he is undefeated with three straight wins against Fresno State, Nevada and Pacific. Also, Hamilton has been in top form lately with three straight victories from the number five position.
“Teague is a really exciting prospect. He’s looked at some video and worked on some changes in his footwork, and it’s really paid off,” Head Coach Marty Davis said. “He has great potential, and he is just scratching the surface of what he can become.”
UCSB won the doubles point on Sunday for the first time in seven matches and will want to build on that victory against St. John’s. The new top doubles team made up of senior Ziad Sultan and Galskov won 8-7 while Hamilton and sophomore Andrew Riminton won 8-6.
“That was a much needed win,” Davis said. “Pacific was a team we beat at the Big West Championships last season and now they aren’t in our league, but we played well. I’m proud of our guys.”
St. John’s (3-3) comes into Santa Barbara in the middle of its tour of matches on the West Coast. The team participated in the Pacific Coast Men’s Doubles Championship in La Jolla, California on Mar. 2.
The Red Storm then defeated Rice on Monday, 4-3 on a win from Reyes at the top singles spot, 6-3, 6-0 over sophomore Tommy Bennett. Reyes has won four straight matches and is 2-0 since being moved up to number one singles. Also winning in singles on Monday were Del Nunzio, playing number two, defeating sophomore Adam Gustafsson 6-0, 6-4 and freshman Robert Livi who won 6-2, 6-1 over freshman David Warren from the number five position.
“We played St. John’s last year and narrowly won 4-3. It’s a completely different lineup from last year though,” Davis said. “It’s fun. We get to host these teams here during their spring break, and we have almost no scouting report on them so we get to look at them on the fly and make adjustments without any prior knowledge.”
After playing UCSB, St. John’s travels up the coast to play Cal Poly and Santa Clara before heading back to the East Coast. The Gauchos will continue their home stand this weekend with matches against Georgetown on Saturday and Radford on Sunday.
This article is an online exclusive and did not appear in the print edition of The Daily Nexus.
Photo by Kenneth Song of The Daily Nexus.