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Men's Tennis Preps For Doubleheader

Robert Verzaal

Robert Verzaal

April 8, 2011

   vs.  
No. 13 Baylor (14-3) vs. Seminole State (16-3) & UT Arlington (8-7)
 April 9, 2011 | 1 p.m. & 6 p.m. CST
| Waco, Texas | Baylor Tennis Center (1,600)
Live Scoring/Blog: BaylorBears.com
Gametracker Gametracker |   In-Match Blog |Game Notes Match Notes
In hosting its second doubleheader of the year, the 13th-ranked Baylor men's tennis team will step outside of Big 12 play to welcome Seminole State College (1 p.m.) and UT Arlington (6 p.m.) to the Baylor Tennis Center on Saturday.

Baylor (14-3, 3-0) has been nearly unbeatable with a 38-1 record when playing multiple matches on the same day in the last 14 years.

Overall, Baylor has won 12 of its last 13 matches including six straight victories. As the home team this season Baylor is 10-2 with a 9-2 mark at the Baylor Tennis Center. Entering the final two contests of their non-conference schedule, the Bears are 11-3 in non-league play. Baylor has never faced Seminole State College (16-3), but the Bears do hold a 9-5 series lead over UT Arlington (8-7).

The matches will also kickoff a five-match homestand for BU that will conclude Baylor's regular season. It will also be the first time Baylor has played an unranked opponent since March 10, which snaps a stretch of seven straight contests against ranked foes for the Bears.

Live scoring and a live blog for Saturday's matches will be available on BaylorBears.com, the official web site of Baylor Athletics.

LAST TIME OUT: Baylor posted its seventh straight win in Austin with a 4-3 win over the eighth-ranked Longhorns on Wednesday. The Bears rallied to take the doubles point for the 15th consecutive match. At No. 1 doubles, Roberto Maytin and John Peers beat Texas' third-ranked duo and Sergio Ramirez and Jordan Rux rebounded from a 6-3 deficit to win at No. 2, 8-6. In singles action, Maytin, Peers and Ramirez all won to seal the victory, which propelled BU to a 3-0 start in Big 12 play.

LOOKING AHEAD: After the doubleheader, the Bears will have six days off before resuming conference play with a match against No. 26 Oklahoma on Fri., April 15 at 6 p.m. The Bears lead 17-14 in the overall series against the Sooners, but Baylor has won the last 16 contests between the two programs.

RANKED BEARS: In the latest ITA team rankings released on April 5, the Bears fell two spots from No. 11 to No. 13, after defeating No. 39 Nebraska. Baylor has been ranked as high as No. 7 to start the season and as low as No. 31 on March 15. Individually, Baylor has four singles players ranked in the ITA top 125 as senior John Peers is ranked No. 18 with a 14-3 record in dual-match play. Freshman Dennis Lengsfeld broke into the rankings for the first time at No. 81, while sophomore Roberto Maytin, who has a 13-2 mark in dual-match play, is ranked 83rd and junior Kike Grangeiro (13-3) is now ranked No. 88. The Bears also have two doubles team listed in the rankings with Peers and Maytin partnering together to be ranked seventh, after posting a 13-2 record to start the season. Sergio Ramirez and Jordan Rux, who are 11-3 on the season are ranked No. 83.

HOME SWEET HOME: The friendly confines of the Baylor Tennis Center having been very kind to the Bears. Over the 10 years of its existence Baylor is 139-9 in matches played in Waco. Under Knoll the Bears are 189-24 when playing at home including matches played at the Streich Courts, the Baylor Tennis Center and various indoor courts in the area. From Jan. 26, 2002 until Jan. 29, 2006, the Bears did not lose at home contest racking up a 72-match win streak. This season, Baylor is 10-2 in home matches with a 9-2 mark at the Baylor Tennis Center.

OWNING NON-CONFERENCE COMPETITION: The Knoll era has brought much success in nonconference play with Baylor enjoying a 261-67 mark in non-league play over the last 14+ years. Last season, the Bears held a 20-4 record in such matches and so far this season they are 11-3.

BAYLOR IN DOUBLEHEADERS: Saturday's matches will be the second time Baylor has played a doubleheader this season. The Bears swept both Lamar and then UT Pan American, 7-0, on March 10 at the Baylor Tennis Center. Baylor has now blanked its opponent in the last seven matches of doubleheader play. Under Matt Knoll, Baylor is 38-1 when playing more than one match on the same day. The Bears have not lost a match on a day they played multiple matches since March 7, 1998.

BAYLOR VS. FIRST TIME OPPONENTS: When the Bears and Trojans meet Saturday it will be the first time in history that the two schools will play. Baylor has had success against first-time opponents during Knoll's tenure in Waco going 37-7 agaist them since 1997. Overall, Baylor is 87-77-2 against first-time opponents. Baylor took care of Purdue 7-0 in its only other first-time matchup this season.

SINGLES STREAKS & TRENDS: Senior John Peers won his fourth straight match over a ranked opponent by downing No. 59 Kellen Damico of Texas in three sets in his last match out. Now Peers is 14-3 in 16 matches at No. 1 and one match at No. 2. The rest of Baylor's singles lineup has been influx throughout the year. As part of the changes Roberto Maytin has played at three different positions, but has recorded a 13-2 mark with 11 wins in his last 12 matches. Kike Grangeiro has also played well for the Bears with an 13-3 record competing at the four, five and six spots.

DOUBLES STREAKS & TRENDS: BU has gotten consistent play throughout the dual-match season from all three of its doubles teams. At the top of the lineup, Roberto Maytin and John Peers are 13-2, at the No. 2 spot Sergio Ramirez and Jordan Rux are 11-3, while at the bottom of the lineup Julian Bley and Kike Grangeiro have a 14-2 mark. Overall, Baylor has won 15 straight doubles points and has swept doubles nine times this year.

SCOUTING SEMINOLE STATE COLLEGE: The Trojans, who are a member of the Oklahoma Collegiate Athletic Conference, enter Saturday's match with a 16-3 mark on the year and ranked as the No. 1 junior college team in the country by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association. Seminole State has gone 2-2 over its last four matches after starting the year 14-1. In their last match out the Trojans beat Cowley, 8-1, on Wednesday. Head coach Brian Nelson is in his fifth season with Trojans and he has a roster that features five sophomores and seven freshmen.

TROJANS TO WATCH: Sophomore Mbonisi Ndimande and freshman Admire Mushonga are ranked No. 1 and No. 3, respectively, in the NJCAA Men's Region II rankings.

SERIES HISTORY: Saturday's meeting will be the first-ever contest between Baylor and Seminole State College.

SCOUTING UT ARLINGTON: Before traveling to Waco on Saturday, the Mavericks will play home matches against UT Pan American on Friday night and then against UC Santa Barbara on Saturday morning. In their last match out, UTA fell to SMU 5-2 on Wednesday. This season the Mavericks are 0-5 on the road. Diego Benitez is in his fifth season at UTA and has a roster that features one senior, three juniors, two sophomores and three freshmen.

MAVERICKS TO WATCH: UTA's top player is junior Mindaugas Celedinas, who is 7-5 at the top of the lineup this spring. Meanwhile, junior David Subirats has played well for the Mavericks at the bottom part of the lineup. He has an 8-4 record at three different positions.

SERIES HISTORY: Baylor holds a 9-5 all-time series lead over the Mavericks and the Bears have won the last eight matches dating back to 1997. BU has played the Mavericks every year since 2006. Before Matt Knoll arrived at Baylor, the Bears were 1-5 against UTA since he has arrived they are 8-0.

LAST TIME AGAINST UT ARLINGTON: A 13th-ranked Baylor squad dispatched of UTA, 7-0, on Feb. 21, 2010 in the second match of a doubleheader for the Bears at the Baylor Tennis Center. The Bears swept all three doubles matches and then won all of the singles matches in straight sets to coast to the shutout win.

PRE-MATCH QUOTES - Head Coach Matt Knoll

On the significance of Saturday's matches:
"We are looking to keep up the momentum. I think we are playing better and better and we are hoping to continue to play well. We are going to work on some of the things we know we need to work on. The other thing that is great is you get to play some other guys that maybe haven't had a chance. We have a lot of guys that deserve the opportunity to play and we could use some different doubles combinations."

On taking a break from the conference season:
"I think just being at home will be nice in that respect. It is incredible how comfortable it is not to have to travel somewhere and be in a hotel and order out of restaurants and lug bags around. I think just being here and sleeping in our own bed is really going to help us catch our breath."

 

 

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