Men's Tennis

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No. 17 Redlands Men's Tennis Stumbles to NAIA Foes on Opening Day

No. 17 Redlands Men's Tennis Stumbles to NAIA Foes on Opening Day

The No. 17 University of Redlands men's tennis team kicked off the 2013 season with a pair of tough defeats to visiting NAIA opponents on Saturday. The Bulldogs fell to the No. 6 Vanguard University Lions, 2-7, before coming up short in heartbreaking fashion to the 12th-ranked Eagles of Concordia University – Irvine, 4-5.

Against Vanguard, the Maroon and Gray had its hands full from the get-go but battled at every doubles position. After falling at No. 1 and 2 in tight decisions, the No. 3 duo of seniors John Brewer (Portland, OR) and Anish Nanda (Cerritos, CA) pulled out an exciting 9-8(3) victory.

Trailing by a score of 1-2, the Bulldogs needed to prevail at four of the six singles matches. Unfortunately, the Lions had other plans, striking first at Nos. 1, 4, and 5 for the overall win.

Redlands gained its only singles victory at the No. 3 spot, where sophomore Nick Cummins (Rancho Mirage, CA) nabbed a 2-6, 6-4, 10-8 win.

Shortly after the Vanguard match, the Bulldogs retook the courts for another challenging showdown. They put together a solid effort in doubles, winning two of three matches against Concordia. Senior Connor Hyde (Peterborough, NH) and Cummins teamed up at the top spot for an impressive 8-1 victory, before Nanda and Brewer recorded an 8-5 performance at No. 3.

In singles, Redlands gained an early point at No. 3 when Cummins' opponent retired at 6-1.

However, Concordia answered with a two-set performance at No. 2, 6-4, 6-0, but Nanda equalized this loss for the Maroon and Gray with a 6-1, 6-0 thrashing of his No. 5 opponent.

Up 4-2, the Bulldogs needed just one more match to seal the deal on the team triumph.

But the Eagles showed great resolve by capturing a straight-set victory at No. 4, before rallying for a pair of three-setters at the top and bottom of the lineup.

Redlands (0-2) continues its tough slate of NAIA opponents with a match against Point Loma Nazarene University on Sat., Feb. 16. The action takes place on Verdieck Courts, beginning at 10 a.m.