Bhatnagar Clinches as Men's Tennis Def. No. 17 Tulane
NEW ORLEANS — Trailing 2-5 in the third set, sophomore Malik Bhatnagar rattled off five consecutive games to clinch his match on court three against Hamish Stewart, 4-6, 7-6(1), 7-5, and give the LSU men’s tennis team its first win against No. 17 Tulane in three seasons Friday afternoon at the City Park Pepsi Tennis Center.
With the win, LSU improves to 5-1 on the season while Tulane drops to 4-1.
Co-Head Coach Chris Brandi on the Match
“This year we have a little different energy and some guys that want to go out and get it with the match on the line,” co-head coach Chris Brandi said. “Tulane is a very good team, and they do a great job. These are the sort of battles we want to be in with top-20 teams. We have to use this momentum the rest of the way. We have a lot of room for improvement, and that’s exciting.”
Tulane tied the match at 1-1 when No. 114 Wagner dropped his match on court two to #42 Erlenbusch, 1-6, 5-7.
To give LSU the 2-1 lead, Kozlov worked a quick, 6-4, 6-1 match against Esses on court four. However, the Green Wave was quick to tie the match back at 2-2 after Kotorman defeated Watson in straight sets, 6-4, 6-2, on court six.
Tulane was quick to take the 3-2 lead when No. 58 Schick snagged a three-set win on court five from Joey Thomas, 4-6, 7-5, 6-4.
Senior Monroe showed grit in his court one win against Moore. After taking the first set in a tiebreaker, 7-6(0) and falling in the second set, 2-6, he rebounded to force the deciding match point to Bhatnagar on court three with a 6-2 third set.
LSU will return home to the LSU Tennis Complex for a match against Rice Sunday at noon CT. Fans coming to the match will receive a free LSU Tennis t-shirt. Admission to all matches in the LSU Tennis Complex is free. Fans can follow the match at www.LSUstats.com and on Twitter @LSUtennis. The match also can be streamed online at LSUsports.net/tennisvideo.
For up-to-date information and behind-the-scenes access on the Tigers, fans can follow the LSU men’s tennis team on Twitter and Instagram at @lsutennis and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/lsutennis.
LSU 4, #17 Tulane 3
1. Shane Monroe (LSU) def. Ewan Moore (TLN) 7-6 (7-0), 2-6, 6-2
2. #42 Luis Erlenbusch (TLN) def. #114 Rafael Wagner (LSU) 6-1, 7-5
3. Malik Bhatnagar (LSU) def. Hamish Stewart (TLN) 4-6, 7-6 (7-1), 7-5
4. Boris Kozlov (LSU) def. Dane Esses (TLN) 6-4, 6-1
5. #58 Tyler Schick (TLN) def. Joey Thomas (LSU) 4-6, 7-5, 6-4
6. Akos Kotorman (TLN) def. Nick Watson (LSU) 6-4, 6-2
1. Joey Thomas/Rafael Wagner (LSU) def. Ewan Moore/Akos Kotorman (TLN) 6-3
2. Tyler Schick/Luis Erlenbusch (TLN) def. Daniel Moreno/Agie Moreno (LSU) 6-2
3. Boris Kozlov/Nick Watson (LSU) def. Dane Esses/Hamish Stewart (TLN) 6-1
Tulane 4-1; National ranking #17
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2,1); Singles (2,4,6, 5, 1,3)