Men's Tennis Tops Nevada, Clinches MW Title Outright
April 21, 2013
RENO, Nev. - The No. 40 San Diego State Men's Tennis team held off Nevada, 4-3, on Sunday afternoon to claim the Mountain West Conference regular season championship. It's the first regular season crown for the Aztecs since 2007.
"I'm really excited for our guys to accomplish this goal," SDSU head coach Gene Carswell said. "Today was fantastic. We had great leadership at the top of our lineup and are excited to get a nice high-altitude win moving into the Mountain West Tournament."
With the score tied, 3-3, it all came down to sophomore Andranik Khachatryan with the conference title on the line. Khachatryan dropped the first set, before rallying for a three-set victory, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4, to seal the match victory and the season accomplishment for the Aztecs (18-7, 6-0 MW).
"(Khachatryan) had to fight through the third set knowing it was all coming down to his match," said Carswell, who won his fifth regular-season crown as head coach at SDSU. "I'm really proud of him. What a day and experience for him to clinch the match for the team."
SDSU had battle adversity from the start of the match, as Nevada won two of three singles matches to earn the doubles point. Senior Derek Siddiqui and junior Shiva Sangwan lost the opening match in No. 2 doubles play to Philip Hinojosa and Quentin Mege, 8-4, but the Aztecs' No. 1 team of sophomore Thorsten Bertsch and junior Hunter Nicholas topped Andrew Poustie and Fernando Sunago, 8-4, to even it up.
However, SDSU's No. 3 duo of Khachatryan and freshman Marvin Tawasi fell to Victor Ouvrard and Robert Allan, 8-6, as the Wolfpack won the doubles point for an early 1-0 lead.
Bertsch began singles play with a victory over Quentin Mege, 6-4, 6-1, in No. 2 slot knot the score, 1-1, but Tawasi lost to Sunago, 6-3, 6-3, in the No. 4 spot, as Nevada regained the lead. No. 112 Siddiqui earned a decision over Ouvrard in No. 1 singles, 6-3, 6-4, to tie the score, 2-2, and Florez knocked off Allan, 7-6 (5), 6-3, in the No. 5 slot to put SDSU ahead for the first time in the match, 3-2.
Nicholas lost a tough match to Poustie, 6-3, 7-6 (4), as Nevada tied the score, but that's when Khachatryan came through in the clutch to bring another conference championship banner to Montezuma Mesa.
The Aztecs will have a first-round bye in the Mountain West Championships this week at USAF Academy, Colo., and will play on Saturday afternoon.