HOUSTON – The Texas A&M – Corpus Christi Men's Tennis team had players back in action on Friday, with Peter Nagy and Pietro Jordao picking up singles wins in the Rice Invitational. Nagy also teamed with Odon Barta, while Jordao played alongside Javier Pujol to pick up doubles victories in the tournament being held at Jake Hess Tennis Stadium on the Rice campus.
"I thought we competed very hard today, this is an extremely strong tournament with some of the best teams in Division I," said Director of Tennis Steve Moore. "I felt like we did a good job at managing the things we can control."
Fresh off of the men's singles championship at the Marco & Co. Catering Islanders Open, Nagy opened the Rice Invitational with a 6-3, 6-1 win over Peter Frank, a past All-Conference USA player for the Owls, in the top flight of the tourney.
Jordao also had success in the singles bracket, picking up a 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 win over Gustavo Gonzalez of Rice. Matt Westmoreland battled Joe Young of Tulane.
"I was especially proud of Peter, he's taken his game, especially his mental game, to another level," said Moore. "I also thought Pietro Jordao competed extremely hard to grind out his third set."
Daniel Erbacher battled hard but came up just short against Cedric Rutsaert of Tulane, losing a 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 final in the opening round. Andrew Maingot fell in three sets by a 3-6, 6-2, 6-3 score against Evan Nix of Texas Tech, Odon Barta lost 6-4, 6-3 against Raphael Pfister of Texas Tech and Guillaume Rauseo fell by a 6-3, 6-3 final against Tommy Bennett of Rice.
Matt Westmoreland was in the third set of his opening match versus Tulane's Joe Young in the top flight due to a rain delay, and Pujol had yet to begin his singles battle against Takuma Ohashi of Tulane.
In doubles action, Nagy and Barta picked up an 8-6 win over Riaan Du Toit and Mitch McDaniels of New Mexico, while Jordao and Pujol won 8-5 against Gonzalez and Dylan Tozier from the host Owls.
Maingot an Erbacher fell by an 8-4 final against brothers Ian and Alexander Van Cott of Tulane, and Westmoreland and Rauseo came up short by an 8-3 score against Dominik Koepfer and Rodrigo Rappaccioli, also from Tulane.
Competing with four freshmen and two sophomores among the players at the tournament, the Islanders had a strong showing on the opening day. In addition, the team will bring in another freshman this January, a highly touted recruit named Ricardo Mayagoitia who is the No. 1 ranked juniors player in Mexico.
"We've got a very young team and a lot to work on," said Moore. "Tournaments like this help in identify those things."
The tournament continues on Saturday, with the final day of play scheduled for Sunday.
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