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TCU Men’s Tennis starts 2019 season with road loss; look to reload in ITA Kickoff Weekend

The team is currently ranked number 22 in the nation. Photo courtesy of TCU Men’s Tennis Twitter
The team is currently ranked number 22 in the nation. Photo courtesy of TCU Men’s Tennis Twitter

The men’s tennis team will look to remain a staple of spring athletics as they look to win their third Big 12 regular season title and fourth-straight Big 12 tournament title this season.

The squad will have a total of 22 matches in 2019 with 14 of those at home. They will play six Big 12 teams, split with three at home and three on the road, starting on March 29th at Baylor.

Tennis’ nine-man roster includes seniors Alex Rybakov and Reese Stalder, junior Alastair Gray, sophomores Eduardo Roldan, Juan Martín, Max Kurzban, and Bertus Kruger, and freshmen Sander Jong and Luc Fomba.

Out of the nine, only three are US-born, with international students coming from as far as South Africa.

Alex Rybakov returns a shot from his opponent at Tulsa this last weekend.
Photo courtesy of TCU Men’s Tennis Twitter

Star senior Rybakov remains undefeated in singles this season, winning Big 12 Player of the Week after his 8-0 start on January 15th.

The team kicked off their 2019 campaign in the Tempe Collegiate Cup going 5-1 against Arizona State, 3-2 against No. 3 Mississippi State, 4-0 against Illinois and two more wins against Mississippi State to close out the tournament.

Their first true road match of the season was a surprising loss to Tulsa, 4-2.

Head coach David Roditi was disappointed in the loss but is ready to reload for the long season ahead.

“We just gotta be better, it’s gonna be a long year otherwise. We gotta put the work back in,” Roditi said.

The team is currently ranked No. 22 in the nation by Oracle IT Rankings after the loss, falling from 14.  

Beginning the home slate, TCU will host the ITA Kickoff Weekend against Loyola Marymount at 2 p.m. this Saturday and will play the winner of Oklahoma State and Arizona State at 1 p.m. Sunday.

The winner of that final game will move onto the ITA National Team Indoor Championship hosted in Chicago, IL Feb. 15-18.

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