Feb. 26, 2010
WACO, Texas- On a day with winds gusting over 30 miles per hour and the temperature hovering in the middle 40s, the 12th-ranked men's tennis team won its fourth straight match by beating the 73rd-ranked SMU Mustangs, 6-1 at the Baylor Tennis Center.
Baylor is now 9-2 on the season and at home, the Bears have now won 14 straight matches and 26 out of 27 dating back to last year. SMU falls to 6-4 on the year.
"I thought both teams handled it well," Knoll said about the tough weather conditions. "It was not an easy day to play. The wind was actually 27 miles per hour when we started, but I thought both teams did a great job. I thought it was about as good as you could have hoped for."
Baylor got off to a great start in doubles with Denes Lukacs and Roberto Maytin dispatching of Tobias Flood and David Costa, 8-1 in just over 25 minutes at the No. 2 position. Next, 60th-ranked Julian Bley and Attila Bucko beat Artem Baradach and Chris Hooshyar at the third spot, 8-2, to give Baylor the doubles point. In the final match on the court, the Bears' 15th-ranked duo of Jordan Rux and Maros Horny fell to Darren Walsh and Adham el Effendi, 8-6, at the No. 1 spot. In dual match play Lukacs and Maytin raised their record to 3-0, Bley and Bucko are now 4-1 and Horny and Rux fall to 3-1.
"That is a new team," Knoll said on the No. 2 doubles team's dominant performance. "I think a lot of that is Roberto kind of settling in. I think he and Denes have a good feel for each and complement each other well. I thought they did a great job. Roberto came out and held serve at love, which kind of set the tone for the match and Denes had his returns going early.
"That team of Walsh and el-Effendi beat us again in doubles. They beat us last year in doubles and I guess they are going to beat us the rest of my career in doubles. I thought they did a super job. They deserved to win that match."
In singles, the Bears continued to get a boost from sophomore Bley, who took down Chris Hooshyar at the No. 6 position 6-1, 6-3 to raise his dual match record to 4-0. The 26th-ranked Rux also dominated his match at the two spot, rolling past David Costa 6-1, 6-0 raising his dual match mark to 8-1. The Bears third man in the lineup Attila Bucko clinched the match with a 6-4, 6-2 win over Darren Walsh. Bucko is 6-1 this season. With the match won, Dominik Mueller defeated Walsh 6-1, 7-6 (6) to improve to 9-1 on the year.
"I thought Rux did a good job of winning a lot of games that were close," Knoll said. "He won a lot of games he was behind in, which led to that score, which I thought said a lot about his day. Dominik had a matchup that was not an easy one because the guy has a huge serve. I thought he managed that well and Julian was great."
The Mustangs got their only point at the No. 5 position as Horny (6-2) fell to Pablo Perez Esnaola 6-2, 5-7, 1-0 (9). In the last match on the court Lukacs beat Baradach 6-2, 7-6 (5). Lukacs is now 9-0 on the year.
The Bears will now take a 10-day break before returning to action on March 9 against Laredo Community College at 2 p.m. at the Baylor Tennis Center in a match that was added to their schedule on Wednesday.
"We got to keep getting better," Knoll said. "We have a lot of great opportunities ahead of us. We are going to take a weekend off, which we almost never do during the season. Hopefully, the guys can kind of recharge and come back next week and get after it. We are really excited about what is in front of us and hopefully we can take advantage of some of the good opportunities we have out there."
Match Notes: The Bears are now 9-0 when they win the doubles point and 0-2 when they lose it. Baylor is 237-86 against ranked opponents in the Matt Knoll era. SMU still leads the all-series 28-17, but since Knoll's arrival Baylor owns a 15-3 mark against the Mustangs.