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A&M men's tennis opens NCAA Tournament against Tulsa in Waco

The winner of the first round match between the Aggies and Hurricane will square off against the winner of No. 3 Baylor against Abilene Christian.
Credit: KAGS-TV

COLLEGE STATION, Texas — For the 28th consecutive time, the No. 25 Texas A&M men’s tennis team gets set to open the NCAA Tournament against the Tulsa Hurricane, with first serve set for 3 p.m. (CT) Friday afternoon at the Hurd Tennis Center on the campus of Baylor University.

The winner of the first round match between the Aggies and Hurricane will square off against the winner of No. 3 Baylor against Abilene Christian in the second round. First serve is slated for 6 p.m. (CT) Saturday evening.

HEAD COACH STEVE DENTON SAID…

“It’s always exciting to begin the final stage of the season. This championship phase is the final test for our team. Hopefully we can take all the lessons that we have learned over the course of the regular season and apply them to both coach and play some of our best tennis of the year. It is survive and advance or go home at this point. Tulsa presents a tough test tomorrow, and we will need to be sharp to advance. I’m excited to see how long this group gets to wear their dancing shoes.”

FIRST SERVE

The Aggies return to the courts Friday following a 21-13 season with a 7-5 ledger in Southeastern Conference matches. A&M landed a trio of student-athletes on All-SEC teams, with junior Noah Schachter leading the way on the All-SEC First Team. Freshmen standouts Luke Casper and Giulio Perego each made an appearance on the SEC All-Freshman team following their breakout efforts in 2022.

IN THE RANKINGS

In the most recent ITA Division I Men’s Team Rankings, released on May 4, Texas A&M improved to the No. 25 position nationally. The most recent individual rankings, released Wednesday, saw A&M’s top-line doubles team of Noah Schachter and Kenner Taylor earn the No. 14 ranking while Schachter and Austin Abbrat appeared at No. 46. In the singles rankings, Schachter came in at No. 32.

SCOUTING THE FIELD

Tulsa enters the NCAA Tournament having earned an at-large bid as a representative of the American Athletic Conference. The Hurricane boast a season record of 15-11 overall and finished 2-4 in conference play. Kody Pearson manages the top-line singles effort for Tulsa, taking home AAC Player of the Year honors. The last meeting between the Aggies and Hurricane took place in the shortened 2020 season, in which the Maroon & White picked up a 6-1 win on the road.

Baylor begins postseason action as the Big 12 Conference Champion and the automatic qualifier from the league. The Bears boast a 26-3 overall record and went 4-1 in conference play, highlighted by a 5-2 regular season win over No. 1 TCU at home. Adrian Boitan leads the Bears at the top of the singles lineup, amassing 20 wins on the season with five nationally-ranked victories. The Aggies defeated Baylor in the most recent meeting during the 2021 season, stunning the Bears in a 4-3 decision in the Brazos Valley.

Abilene Christian earned the automatic bid from the Western Athletic Conference after the Wildcats booked their first WAC Tournament title in program history. ACU holds an overall record of 13-11 and completed conference play with a 5-1 mark. The Aggies have won every meeting since joining the SEC in 2012-13, most recently sweeping past the Wildcats in a 7-0 affair earlier this season.

FOLLOW THE ACTION

The NCAA and Turner Sports have named TennisOne as the official app and exclusive live streaming partner of the 2022 NCAA Men’s Tennis Championships. Click here to download the app and access free live streaming of this weekend’s matches in Waco. A link to access live stats is provided here. Aggie fans throughout Central Texas are invited to attend the first and second Rounds at the Hurd Tennis Center, with free admission for all patrons.