Men’s tennis sweeps conference doubleheader

Aaron Asmus

Sacramento State men’s tennis pulled out two crucial wins against Big Sky Conference opponents Northern Arizona University and Idaho State on Saturday to bring their conference record to 7-3 on the year.

The Hornets beat Northern Arizona 4-2 and Idaho State 6-1. This was a crucial development for the team because it was the first match in months in which the Hornets were fully healthy.

Niranjan Ram, Sean Kolar and Marek Marksoo were all in the lineup at some point Saturday after missing some time, which bodes well for the success of the team moving toward the conference championship. Ram was particularly impressive in his singles match vs Northern Arizona.

“Ram played the match of the season,” said coach Kevin Kurtz. “He played a really good tiebreaker and the other kid double-faulted for him [Ram] to win the match.”

Ram competed as the No. 3 singles player against Northern Arizona and won his match in straight sets. He beat Alexandre Locci 6-3, 7-6 (7-3) and is now 6-6 on the year in singles.

Marksoo competed as the No. 4 singles player against Northern Arizona and No. 2 doubles with Kolar against Idaho State. His singles match went unfinished 3-6, 7-6, 4-4 and he won his doubles match with Kolar 6-1.

Kolar sat out for the first time this year against Saint Mary’s College on Wednesday, but returned for a strong performance against Idaho State. He won in singles in straight sets, 6-3, 6-3, and helped secure the doubles point with Marksoo.

Joaquin Marquez continued his excellent week of tennis and followed his match-clinching performance against Saint Mary’s by going 2-0 in singles. He won against Northern Arizona’s Adi Zilberstein in three sets, 3-6, 6-4, 6-2, and in straight sets against Idaho State’s Cody Miller, 6-2, 6-2. He’s won four straight singles matches and is 7-3 in singles play.

Roy Brandys was the No. 1 singles player again and went 1-1 in singles. He lost to Northern Arizona’s Jordan Gobatie 7-5, 6-1 and beat Daniel Loebel in three sets, 6-4, 5-7, 10-6. Both of Brandys’ doubles matches with Tom Miller went unfinished as the doubles point was already decided.

Freshman Kasparas Zemaitelis stepped into the No. 2 singles role and went 1-1 in singles. He won against Northern Arizona’s Eden Peleg in straight sets 6-3, 6-2, but lost to Idaho State’s Krzysztof Stempien in three sets, 6-2, 2-6, 10-7. Zemaitelis played with Christopher Clayton as the No. 3 doubles against Northern Arizona and won 6-3.