Men’s Tennis faces No. 27 Auburn

After falling behind 3-1, the Jackets won the last three matches to claim the victory over No. 27 Auburn on Feb. 17 at the Bill Moore Tennis Center, 4-3.

Facing their fifth straight ranked opponent, the Jackets broke a two-game losing streak and stayed undefeated at home.

Tech took two of three of the doubles matches to take an early lead. The teams of junior Guillermo Gomez and junior Ryan Smith and freshman Magin Ortiga and freshman Juan Spir each won their matches, securing the point heading into singles play. Tech’s No. 1 team of junior Dean O’Brien and junior Eliot Potvin could not take down Auburn’s team of Tim Puetz and Alex Stamchev, ranked No. 6 in the nations in doubles.

Still, despite falling behind early, the Tigers were able to take a large 3-1 lead to force the Jackets to win all of its remaining matches in order to win the matchup between the two schools. All of Tech’s higher-ranked players lost their matches.

O’Brien, No. 3 on Tech’s singles team, was the first Jacket to drop his singles match, losing in straight sets to Tim Hewitt.

Ortiga, No. 2 on Tech’s singles team, was next to lose, also losing in straight sets to Alex Stamchev, ranked No. 86 nationally in singles play. The final score was 6-4, 6-4.

All-American Gomez, ranked No. 4 in singles play in the nation, lost a three-set match on top court, 2-6, 6-3, 7-5. It was just the second match Gomez has lost this year in singles. Gomez’s opponent Tim Puetz had earlier in the year lost to Gomez in the ITA National Indoor Championships in the Round of 32 in three sets.

Tech began the come back when Spir won his point, 6-4, 6-4 in the No. 4 matchup. While Potvin lost his first match set, he won the next two, blanking opponent Strecker. The final score was 4-6, 6-2, 6-0.

Tied at 3-3, Tech turned to sophomore Kevin King to break the tie for the victory. King beat Auburn’s Alexander Sajonz, 6-4, 6-3 to secure Tech the comeback win.

Tech will next play its ACC opener against Florida State in Tallahassee, Fla. on Feb. 21. The Jackets lost last year’s meeting at Bill Moore Tennis Center, 5-2.