Dear Lobo Tennis Fans,
First of all, thank you guys so much for coming out last Sunday in big numbers for our senior day/Loren Dils ALS fundraiser. It means a lot to our student athletes to take time out of your busy days to come out and watch them compete. Obviously too, the support you all show for Loren is incredible. I know personally that he is humbled by all of your support, and on days like that, even a little embarrassed :)
The weather started off ok for doubles, but the winds picked up and forced play inside. We had won the doubles point, thanks to wins at #3 and #1 and had just started the singles when play was forced inside.
The Lobos started fast at numbers two, four, and six, but very slow at numbers one, three, and five. This meant we were going to be in a dog fight, makes sense as the Lobos were taking on the very talented, and dangerous Nevada WOLF PACK. A battle of the dogs if you will.
We all really wanted to win this match as Nevada proved they would be very tough challenge last year. We escaped Reno with a 4-3 win over the exact same team, so we knew this year would be very similar. Also, we wanted to honor our lone senior, Mads Hegelund by competing hard and getting a win. Nevada entered the match with a stellar 15-4 record.
We were able to get the wins at number two and four where at #2 Freshman of the Year candidate Hayden Sabatka was able to dominate his opponent. At four Andy Van Der Vyver also won in straight sets.
Unfortunately, the Lobos were outplayed at numbers one and three. This made the team match score 3-2 Lobos and put the spotlight on Hegelund at number six where he led 7-6, 5-2.
Facing a couple break points as the nerves and the thought of playing his last home match started to creep in, Hegelund dug deep, came to net and forced an error to seal his career with a win, both for him and for his team!
It was a magic moment, as Hegelund clinched the match. He dropped his racquet, looked at his teammates and gave the biggest ear to ear smile we’d seen him give in quite some time! The boys piled on and celebrated in style. It was a great moment for Mads, and a great moment for this team to stave of a very game Nevada challenge. They will be a very tough out come tournament time.
I’m so thrilled, and I know I can speak for Alan too in saying, we are so proud of Mads! We’re privileged to have been a small part of Mads big journey to UNM. He is a great player, but he’s an even better student and person. He’s been at a 4.0GPA or better five times in his career which just astounds me!
It’s been an absolute pleasure!
Now we look to Mads and the rest of the fellas to lead us to Fresno for the Mountain West Conference Championships. We are off this weekend and will wait for the dust to settle to see where we end up. It’s our understanding that the National ITA ranking will determine where everyone falls for the tournament. If that is the case, we are looking at the number two seed behind two-time defending MWC Champions, Boise State. The last two seasons, they beat us in the final match. Last year they beat us 4-3 by winning the last match on 7-6 in the third. It was a thrilling match with a lot of ups and downs.
We started this march to Fresno in August. It’s time to lay it all on the line, and we are preparing every day to do just that.
Please follow this blog and http://www.golobos.com to stay up to date with both the men’s and the women’s teams as we play for us, you guys, UNM, Albuquerque, and the great state of New Mexico. We will compete hard and hope to make you all proud.
Thanks again for a wonderful season of continued support! We look forward to you guys following us down this home stretch!
As always, Go LOBOS!!!