OXFORD – The Ole Miss men’s tennis team outlasted No. 10 Texas A&M at the Palmer/Salloum Tennis Center in Oxford, Miss. in just over four hours of action. The Aggies fell to 20-6 overall and 9-2 in league play, while the Rebels improved to 12-12 overall and 4-8 in the SEC.
“Tonight was a really good college match,” head coach Steve Denton said. “I was really proud of how we fought back as it looked like they may win 4-0.”
For the first time in nine matches the Aggies failed to capture the crucial doubles point. Despite dropping the point, the sophomore duo of Harrison Adams and Shane Vinsant made quick work of Nik Scholtz and Ricardo Jorge on doubles court two. The 64th-ranked duo only dropped three games in their 45-minute match.
Ole Miss clinched the match’s first point thanks to a pair of tiebreaker victories on doubles court one and three. The 90th-ranked duo of William Kallberg and Stefan Lindmark toppled A&M’s No. 6 ranked tandem of Junior Ore and Jackson Withrow on court one. Not too long afterwards, Ole Miss clinched the point on court three as Johan Backstrom and Joe Rogers bested the 66th-ranked partnership of Jeremy Efferding and Jordan Szabo.
“We were a bit unlucky to lose the doubles point,” Denton said. “Tiebreakers went against us at one and three.”
The Rebels maintained their momentum in singles play winning the first set on four of six courts. Junior Jackson Withrow surrendered the second point to Ole Miss falling in straight sets to Ricardo Jorge on court five. Shortly after Withrow’s defeat, 10th-ranked Harrison Adams was upset on court one in straight sets by No. 22 Nik Scholtz.
The Aggies appeared to swing the momentum in their favor, beginning with Junior Jordan Szabo putting the first point on the board for the maroon and white winning 6-3, 6-3 on court six over Vinod Gowda.
Just a few minutes later, A&M scored its second point via a three-set win by No. 21 Shane Vinsant over 118th-ranked William Kallberg on court two. No. 51 Jeremy Efferding evened the match with a victory on court three over Johan Backstrom. The Florida native rallied to victory dropping only four games in the final two sets.
“I thought Shane was very impressive today in singles and doubles,” Denton added. “We fought our hearts out but give Ole Miss credit, I thought they played very well today and in the end they came up with the shots.”
All the attention at the Palmer/Salloum Tennis Center shifted to the last match in action, Junior Ore against Stefan Lindmark on court four. Lindmark captured the first set before Ore forced a deciding third-set with an impressive tiebreak victory in set number two. As the match crossed the four hour mark, Lindmark clinched the upset victory for Ole Miss 6-3 in the third set.
“We can’t dwell on this one,” Denton said. “We have to get up for a very tough match against a ranked Mississippi State on Sunday.”
Sunday afternoon the Aggies will finish their regular season schedule at 18th-ranked Mississippi State. Stay tuned to AggieAthletics.com and follow @AggieMTEN on Twitter for information regarding Texas A&M men’s tennis.
No. 53 Ole Miss def. No. 10 Texas A&M, 4-3
Ole Miss (12-12, 4-8); Texas A&M (20-6, 9-2)
No 1 – No. 22 Nik Scholtz (MISS) def. No. 14 Harrison Adams (TAMU) 6-3, 6-4
No 2 – No. 21 Shane Vinsant (TAMU) def. No. 118 William Kallberg (MISS) 6-4, 4-6, 6-4
No 3 – No. 51 Jeremy Efferding (TAMU) def. Johan Backstrom (MISS) 4-6, 6-2, 6-2
*No 4 – Stefan Lindmark (MISS) def. Junior Ore (TAMU) 6-4, 6-7 (1), 6-3
No 5 – Ricardo Jorge (MISS) def. Jackson Withrow (TAMU) 6-2, 6-4
No 6 – Jordan Szabo (TAMU) def. Vinod Gowda (MISS) 6-3, 6-3
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1,3); Singles (5,1,6,2,3,4)
*clinched the match