COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The 14th-ranked Texas A&M men’s tennis team is set to host its first Southeastern Conference match as it welcomes 19th-ranked Vanderbilt to the friendly confines of the George P. Mitchell Tennis Center Friday evening at 6 p.m.
“We’re very excited to be hosting our first two SEC home matches,” Texas A&M head coach Steve Denton said. “These are two great opportunities for us to play two very talented top-20 opponents. Vanderbilt’s top of the lineup is as good as anybody’s in the SEC and we look forward to the challenge they present. They’re coming in riding a lengthy winning streak and it will be up to our team to come out confident and finish strong.”
Texas A&M (9-5, 1-1 SEC) is coming off a weekend which they earned its first Southeastern Conference win at South Carolina, 4-1, and then suffered a heart-breaking, 4-3, loss in Gainesville to Florida. The loss to Florida marked the Aggies first-true road loss on the season. Overall the Aggies are 5-1 on the road, 2-1 at home and 2-3 at neutral-site contests. In singles, the Aggies boast a 47-26 record while in pairs-play, the Maroon and White own a 25-9 mark.
The Aggies feature two doubles pairs ranked in the top-25 nationally in Jackson Withrow and Junior Ore, the 17th-ranked duo, and Harrison Adams and Shane Vinsant, the 21st-ranked tandem. Ore and Withrow lead the team in doubles wins with a 9-2 record, with all nine wins coming from the No. 1 doubles position. Adams and Vinsant follow closely behind with an 8-2 record and a 7-2 mark from the No. 2 line. Rounding out the projected doubles lineup is the tandem of Jeremy Efferding and Jordan Szabo, holding a 7-5 record.
In singles, Texas A&M is led by 90th-ranked Vinsant, with a 9-2 mark, including a 7-2 record from the No. 4 singles line. Adams and Efferding follow with each posting an 8-3 record. Efferding boasts a 4-0 mark from the No. 1 slot while Adams holds a 6-0 record at the No. 3 line. 115th-ranked Withrow (5-4), Szabo (6-4) and Ore (5-7) round out the projected singles lineup for the Aggies.
Vanderbilt (11-3, 2-0 SEC) enters the contest riding a six match winning streak that featured wins against LSU and Arkansas. In singles, 25th-ranked Ryan Lipman leads the way for the team, posting a 12-1 record with a 9-1 mark from the top singles line. No. 41 Gonzales Austin has played the No. 2 line the majority of the season, with a 7-1 mark there and a 9-3 record overall. Kris Yee enters the contest riding a 12-match winning streak and having dropped only one contest on the season. Jeff Offerdahl, Marc van der Merwe and Anton Kovrigin round out the projected starting singles lineup for the Commodores.
Texas A&M will be in action again on Sunday when it hosts a double-header against SEC-foe and fifth-ranked Kentucky followed by an afternoon match against Prairie View A&M. To learn more about the Texas A&M men’s tennis team, visit AggieAthletics.com and follow @AggieMTEN on Twitter.
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