Xavier tennis winless in young season thus far

By: Robert Jamieson~Staff Writer~

The men’s and women’s tennis teams have had tough starts to their seasons. Each team started 0-2 with scoring lines of 7-0 4-3 in their two losses. Both teams played difficult opening matches against Big 10 powerhouses Ohio State and Indiana.

The men’s team opened its season with a 7-0 loss to the fifth-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes.

Despite the loss, Xavier’s top four singles players all had solid outings despite each of them falling in straight sets. Men’s No. 1, Jimmy Roebker, played two very tight sets, including a first set tiebreaker against No. 31 ranked player in the country Peter Kobelt (7-6, 6-3).

The men’s team followed up its match against the Buckeyes with a 4-3 loss to Eastern Kentucky. Xavier was up 3-1 and proceeded to drop its final three singles matches. Sophomores Zach Mueck and Adam Krull were the only Musketeers to earn wins in the singles matches.

Mei Headshot
Senior Mesa Mei went 1-1 in doubles matches with senior Jimmy Roebker in two Xavier losses at OSU and EKU

Mueck defeated Daridge Saidi in three tough sets (6-3, 3-6, 6-1). Krull had a much easier time with his opponent, Joao Maio, with a two set victory (6-4, 6-0). The formerly nationally-ranked doubles tandem of Mesa Mei and Roebker took down the No. 1 doubles squad from EKU (6-3). Xavier’s second doubles team of Krull and Michael Moe also took care of business with a 6-3 victory.

Xavier’s women’s tennis team had a similar start to its season. XU opened with a 7-0 loss to the 40th ranked Indiana Hoosiers. Sophomore Alex Brinker and junior Daniella Patton both faced top 100 players.

Brinker faced No. 73 Katie Klyczek, and fell in straight sets (6-2, 6-1). Patton faced No. 86 Sophie Garr and also fell in two sets (6-1, 6-1).

Despite the loss, Sydney Liggins had the match of the day against IU’s Paula Guiterres. After losing the first set, Liggins altered the match momentum by taking the second set 6-4. Liggins could not hold on, however, falling 10-7 in the final set.

After six hours of hard fought tennis, XU fell to Miami (Ohio), 4-3. With the teams tied at 3-3 going into the final singles match, Miami came out on top.

Senior Andrea Wolf gave Xavier its first singles victory of the day with a 6-2, 6-3 victory over the Redhawk’s Ramona Costea. Miami took victories at the second, third and fourth spots in the lineup. The match looked bleak until sophomore Alex Brinker held down the No. 1 spot with a tough three set victory (3-6, 6-4, 6-4).

After Xavier took two of three games in the doubles match, the match came down to the very last singles match of the day between Xavier’s Lizzie Oosterbaan and Miami’s Ana Rajkovic. In what turned out to be an epic three -set battle seeing three straight tie breaks, Oosterbaan fell 6-7 (4), 7-6 (6), 7-6 (9).

Head coach Eric Toth was impressed with how the match progressed.

“Both teams fought close for six hours and should be applauded for their efforts tonight,” Toth said. “Congratulations to Miami (Ohio) on earning a hard fought victory.”

The Xavier women’s team will host its first home match against Abilene Christian at 7 p.m. on Feb. 1 at the Eastern Hills Indoor Tennis Club. The men’s team will take the court next Jan. 31 for a doubleheader against Brown and Bryant.