MSU Denver women’s and men’s tennis began conference play with two goals in mind: stay determined as a team and become even more focused on winning.
April 1 began against visiting Western New Mexico with the men and women coming up with a loss. Later in the day they defeated Colorado Christian.
The morning brought an overcast that made conditions tougher in their first match than expected for the Roadrunners.
“I think it’s always difficult to play in these conditions because the wind changes and the temperature changes,” freshman Brandon Nachbar said. “It was really cold this morning when we started. The courts were icy and you never know when we are going to play. It’s difficult but it’s just something you have to adjust to.”
The men’s team went on to lose 8-1 to open up RMAC play against Western New Mexico.
Playing at the No. 5 singles spot was Sophomore Marty Lukosiunas who defeated Pablo Santibanez 6-7 (0-4), 7-6 (5), 12-10 for the men’s only win.
“I just think in general that we are right there, we are all playing pretty well,” Nachbar said. “Just going into the third set, it was a matter of finishing up the matches.”
The women’s team lost 4-5 against Western New Mexico.
Freshman Alex Horton fell to Diamond Morrill in a grueling matchup 4-6, 7-6 (5-0), 6-1.
“I think I played really good,” Horton said. “She (Morrill) definitely came out to play her best which made me play my best and I think it could have gone either way today. It was a good match, it was close.”
Head coach Daniel Hangstefer commented on how his team did in the opening matches.
“We were in a situation to win these matches on both sides. It’s tough to loose matches like that but I think that we’re coming together as a team.”
After traveling to Lakewood that afternoon, the Roadrunners women’s team came away with a 7-2 win over CCU.
Horton highlighted the afternoon for the women by defeating Raeghan Rudkin of (CCU) in two sets 7-5, 7-6 (6-0).
The men had a great outing as well winning 9-0. At the No. 1 spot for the men’s team, Joey Tscherne set the tone for a dominating afternoon by defeating Ryder Searle (CCU) 6-0, 6-1.
The No. 3 singles position was Brandon Nachbar who fell to Vladimir Gnilozubov 7-6 (5-0), 4-6, 6-2. Nachbar and teammate Tscherne won in doubles competition against Colorado Christian University 8-4.
The men’s team sit at a 7-12 overall record while the women hold a 5-15 record.