BATON ROUGE, La. – In an epic comeback attempt, the No. 48 Tigers of LSU (8-7, 1-4 SEC) were edged out by the No. 42 Crimson Tide (12-7, 3-2 SEC) 4-3, Friday at the LSU Tennis Complex.
Fans gathered at the new indoor courts for the first time to watch two teams battle until the end. LSU slipped in doubles play, giving the Tide a 1-0 advantage heading into singles.
“We didn’t play as well in double in certain spots that we usually do and we needed to give ourselves the momentum,” Head Coach Jeff Brown said.
Continuing on, LSU newcomer Nikola Samardzic took the first singles loss to Spencer Richey 6-4, 6-2 on court four. It was extremely close with the remaining courts taking all of their first sets to five-all, minus court six, with Gabor Csonka and Simon Freund both having to compete in first set tiebreakers.
Bama took a 3-0 advantage over LSU with a 7-5, 6-3 win on court one from Alabama’s No. 81 Korey Lovett over No. 102 Jordan Daigle. Simon Freund flipped the tone for LSU, winning his match on court five over Matthew Rossouw 7-6 (7-0), 6-3.
Following Freund’s momentum change, Justin Butsch took a 7-5, 6-3 win against Becker O'Shaughnessey and the Tigers crept up to a one point deficit.
Csonka held his own against his No. 62 opponent, the highest singles ranking in the match. Although slipping in a first set tiebreaker, Csonka found a 6-3 win in the second set, but fell behind in the third for Osama to win 6-3 and solidify the victory for his team.
Arias, finishing seconds after Csonka, also dropped his first set with a score of 6-4. Despite fighting against cramps, his second set brought on a 6-2 win and eventually he finished off his opponent 6-3 in the third.
“We gave ourselves some chances,” Brown added. “Ultimately, we didn’t have enough to make the comeback but I think the guys are fighting as a team and we are hoping to continue to show improvement.”
LSU hopes to regroup as they return home Sunday to face the No. 25 team in the nation, Mississippi State.
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.
Tennis Match Results
Alabama vs LSU
3/18/2016 at Baton Rouge, La. (LSU Tennis Complex)
#42 Alabama 4, #48 LSU 3
1. #81 Korey Lovett (UA) def. #102 Jordan Daigle (LSU) 7-5, 6-3
2. #62 Mazen Osama (UA) def. #106 Gabor Csonka (LSU) 7-6 (7-5), 3-6, 6-3
3. Justin Butsch (LSU) def. B. O'Shaughnessey (UA) 7-5, 6-3
4. Spencer Richey (UA) def. Nikola Samardzic (LSU) 6-4, 6-2
5. Simon Freund (LSU) def. Matthew Rossouw (UA) 7-6 (7-0), 6-3
6. Boris Arias (LSU) def. Danny Kerznerman (UA) 4-6, 6-2, 6-4
1. #42 Korey Lovett/Mazen Osama (UA) def. #8 Boris Arias/Jordan Daigle (LSU) 6-4
2. Grayson Goldin/B. O'Shaughnessey (UA) def. Justin Butsch/Tam Trinh (LSU) 6-2
3. Gabor Csonka/Andrew Korinek (LSU) def. Spencer Richey/Matthew Rossouw (UA) 6-3
Alabama 12-7, 3-2 SEC; National ranking #42
LSU 8-7, 1-4 SEC; National ranking #48
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1,3); Singles (4,1,5,3,2,6)