LUBBOCK (KCBD) – No. 15 Texas Tech (4-0) won the doubles point and added singles victories from their top three players in the 4-1 win over California on Sunday at the McLeod Tennis Center.
With two wins secured in the ITA Kick-Off Weekend matches in Lubbock this weekend, Texas Tech qualifies for the ITA National Team Indoor Championships set for Feb. 18-21 in Seattle, Wash.
Just as they did against LSU, the Red Raiders got off to a fast start in doubles and quickly secured the doubles point. Raony Carvalho and Rafael Garcia defeated Cal's No.1 pair Ben McLachlan and Pedro Zerbini, 8-3. Texas Tech's No.2 duo, Vitor Manzini and Gonzalo Escobar, beat No. 13-ranked Nick Andrews and Chris Konigsfeldt, 8-5. Tech's David Gonzalez and Raphael Pfister were winning their match, 7-4, when the Red Raiders secured the doubles point.
Brazilian native, Raony Carvalho put Tech's first singles point on the board with his two-set win over Cal's No. 2 player, Chris Konigsfeldt, 6-3, 6-0. The Golden Bears could feel the pressure mounting and they claimed a point at the No. 6 position with Bozhidar Katsarov's win over Raphael Pfister, 7-6, 6-1. The Red Raiders increased their match lead to 3-1 when Gonzalo Escobar defeated Pedro Zerbini at the top singles spot, 6-1, 6-3.
With the match score favoring the Red Raiders at 3-1 and three singles matches remaining, either team could claim the spot at the indoor championships. California took control and won the first sets at No. 3, No 4, and No. 5 singles. Texas Tech bounced back by winning each of the second sets. The stage was set for exciting tennis as Rafael Garcia, Vitor Manzini, and Gabe Wanderley battled their Cal opponents.
In a match that lasted 3 hours and 33 minutes, Texas Tech's Rafael Garcia closed out Carlos Cueto at No. 3 singles with a Red Raider win, 4-6, 6-3, 6-3, assuring Texas Tech a place in the 2011 ITA National Team Indoor Championships.
Texas Tech head coach Tim Siegel
"This was without doubt one of the greatest team matches ever played at the McLeod Tennis Center," declared head coach Tim Siegel. "I think this ranks as one of the top team victories I've ever experienced at Texas Tech! Cal is a very good team and it was a great match to watch. I am very proud of our players and of their gutsy effort. They simply refused to give in and they fought for every point until the match was ours."
ITA Kick-Off Weekend – 2nd Round
#15 Texas Tech 4, California 1
Doubles – Order of Finish: 1, 2,
1. Raony Carvalho/Rafael Garcia (TT) def. Ben McLachlan and Pedro Zerbini (CAL), 8-3
2. Vitor Manzini/Gonzalo Escobar (TT) def. #13 Nick Andrews/Chris Konigsfeldt (CAL), 8-5
3. David Gonzalez/Raphael Pfister (TT) vs. Bozhidar Katsarov/Sky Lovill (CAL), 7-4 – susp.
Singles – Order of Finish: 2, 6, 1, 3
1. #20 Gonzalo Escobar (TT) def. Pedro Zerbini (CAL), 6-1, 6-3
2. Raony Carvalho (TT) def. #50 Chris Konigsfeldt (CAL), 6-3, 6-0
3. #59 Rafael Garcia (TT) def. Carlos Cueto (CAL), 4-6, 6-3, 6-3
4. Vitor Manzini (TT) vs. Nick Andrews (CAL), 5-7, 7-5, 33 – susp.
5. Gabriel Wanderley (TT) vs. Ben McLachan (CAL), 6-7, 6-4, 2-1 – susp.
6. Bozhidar Katsarov (CAL) def. Raphael Pfister (TT), 7-6, 6-1