NORMAN, Okla. - The sixth-ranked Baylor men's tennis team was eliminated from the Big 12 Championship with a 4-2 loss to No. 41 Texas Tech Thursday in the quarterfinal round at the Headington Family Tennis Center.
The Bears (21-7) have dropped five straight matches against the Red Raiders (12-14). The loss to TTU was BU's second in the last five days, after falling 4-3 in Lubbock Saturday.
Baylor came up short in the doubles point to fall behind early. First, Constantin Frantzen and Max Tchoutakian suffered a 6-4 setback to Jackson Cobb and Alex Sendegeya at the No. 3 spot. That result was followed by No. 17 Will Little and Juan Benitez's 6-4 loss to 13th-ranked Connor Curry and Bjorn Thomson at the top of the lineup.
In singles action, the Bears roared back with Little cruising past Carlos DiLaura, 6-4, 6-0 at the No. 5 spot and Frantzen rolling over Cobb, 6-3, 6-2, at the bottom of the lineup to take a 2-1 lead. However, that would be it for the Bears on the day as they lost each of the other four first sets.
The 14th-ranked Benitez, in the only rematch in singles from Saturday's contest, fell again to No. 29 Jolan Cailleau, 6-3, 6-3 in the No. 1 spot to tie the team score, 2-2.
Texas Tech took the lead for good with 59th-ranked Johannes Schretter losing to Sendegeya, 6-4, 6-4, on court three. With that result on the board, the two remaining matches on the court were headed for second-set tiebreakers.
Tchoutakian, ranked No. 44, fought off three-match points to tie his tiebreaker on court two against No. 79 Thomson, 6-6. The BU senior went on to win the tiebreaker 12-10 to force his match into a third set. Before that third set could start, the Red Raiders clinched the match. Jimmy Bendeck was unable to win his tiebreaker and fell to Curry, 6-4, 7-6(4) at the No. 4 position.
Baylor now trails the all-time series against Texas Tech, 31-28.
Baylor leads the series 22-6 under head coach Matt Knoll.
BU lost a quarterfinal match at the Big 12 Championship for the first time since 1997.
The Bears are now 13-2 all-time in Big 12 Championship quarterfinal matches.
Baylor is 36-13 all-time in Big 12 Championship play and 2-2 against Texas Tech in the event.
BU is 1-3 in matches as the No. 3 seed at the Big 12 Championship.
The Bears have now lost four out of their last five matches overall.
TOP QUOTE #1
"They just crushed us. We are disappointed. They have a system. They played to their system. They executed it. Our system is different than theirs. Their system has won two times in a row now." - head coach Matt Knoll on the match
TOP QUOTE #2
"We got some time. We are going to try to focus on school and get a fresh start. The most important part of the season is ahead of us. We are excited about having another opportunity to play a match that is for sure." - Knoll on bouncing back
Baylor will now learn its NCAA Championship destination and opponent on Tuesday at 4 p.m. CT.
Follow the official Twitter and Instagram accounts of the team: @BaylorMTennis for an inside look with results, photos and stories all season long.