Men's Tennis to Host C-USA Match, Friday
April 5, 2007
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - The University of Memphis men's tennis team (8-9 overall, 1-2 C-USA) will host its final Conference USA regular season match, Friday, at 2 p.m., when Southern Miss (9-9 overall, 2-1 C-USA) comes to Rhodes College.
Memphis comes in to the match on a three-match winning streak and having won five of their last six matches. The three-straight wins is the Tigers' longest streak of the season, but their only loss in the last six matches was a tough 4-3 loss at UAB in league play. With the conference tournament just two weeks away, the Tigers are looking to build some momentum for the league championships.
Junior Amrit Narasimhan leads the team with a 12-4 record since dual season play began in January. Narasimhan is 7-3 at No. 1 singles and has a five-match winning streak. Fellow junior Jimmy Khougassian is also carrying a winning streak, having won his last four matches, including a win in a super tiebreak at No. 1 singles in Memphis' last match against Murray State. Khougassian is also half of the team's most successful doubles tandem, as he and freshman Charlie Ramsay lead the squad with a 9-7 overall record, all of their matches coming at No. 2 doubles.
A pair of Tiger freshmen also have their own winning streaks going, as Spencer Heflin and Cody Loup have each won three straight matches. Heflin is 6-3 at No. 6 singles and is now 8-5 in dual season play, while Loup is 6-3 at No. 5 singles and is 7-7 in dual season play. Loup also played doubles for the first time in a dual season match against Murray State, teaming with Benedikt Fischer for an 8-7 win at No. 1 doubles against Murray State.
Fischer snapped a tough losing spell against Murray State, blanking his No. 2 singles opponent. He is looking to get back to the .500 mark in spring dual play, sporting an 8-9 record in dual match play. Sophomore Tezar Putra also saw action against Murray State, picking up his first dual season singles win of the season at No. 6 in straight sets.
Southern Miss comes in to the Saturday's match having snapped a three-match losing streak of its own with a 6-1 win over Southeastern Louisiana, a team Memphis defeated 5-2 back on Tuesday.
Southeastern Louisiana is one of a trio of common opponents between the Tigers and the Golden Eagles. Both teams beat Southeastern Louisiana and Indiana State. The Tigers downed Indiana State, 7-0, while the Golden Eagles downed the Sycamores, 4-3, in Hattiesburg. Both teams also have a loss to UAB on the books, Memphis falling 4-3, while Southern Miss fell 5-2.
USM has a very young roster, with just one senior, a pair of sophomores and six freshmen, but the two programs have history between them. Since 1998-99, Memphis is 4-3 against the Golden Eagles with the two losses coming in tournament play, once in the Conference USA championships and once in the UC-Irvine Classic. But the Tigers have not lost to USM since the 2000-01 season, winning the next four meetings between the two programs.
The Conference USA match will be played at Rhodes College. Admission to the match is free, although fans need to check in with the Rhodes security guard at the gate and may need a parking pass from the security gate.