BYU tennis players make it to semifinals in intercollegiate championship

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The men’s BYU tennis team participated in the 57th Southern California Intercollegiate Championships on Oct. 30, and two players, Francis Sargeant and Andrey Goryachkov, made it to the doubles semifinals.

The Cougars started off strong the first day of the tournament as four players advanced to the main draw in singles.

Francis Sargeant (left) returns a shot during a tennis match. Photo by Chris Bunker.
Francis Sargeant (left) returns a shot during a tennis match. (Photo by Chris Bunker)

Sterling Galli dominated his first match against Nishanth Yamani of UCLA with a 6-0, 6-0 win. He then advanced to win against UC San Diego’s Devon Sousa, 6-1, 6-2.

Nikki Rae defeated Azusa Pacific’s Gary Yam 6-1, 6-4, but then lost to Cry Pang 6-1, 6-3, which sent him to compete in the consolation round.

Juan Canales was able to squeeze out a win against Alan Leahy by winning the first match and cinching the win in the third match with a 3-6, 6-4, and 6-1 win.

Canales then advanced to the singles quarterfinals along with Sargeant on the second day of the tournament. Canales had a close call against opponent Justin Agbayani from UC Irvine in which he lost the first match but then stole the momentum and won the next two matches, eventually winning 6-4, 6-1.

“Juan Canales turned a lucky-loser opportunity into a quarterfinal appearance in one of the most prestigious college tournaments in the country,” said BYU head coach Brad Pearce.

Canales and Sargeant’s run eventually ended in the quarterfinals the next day of the tournament. Canales lost to Ziad Sultan of UCSB 6-3, 7-5, and seed no. 5 Sargeant was defeated by UCLA’s seed no. 3 Mackie Mcdonald 6-4, 6-2.

Sargeant and Goryachkov beat team Tobas Galskov and Cory Karent from UCSB, which allowed them to progress to the semifinals in doubles play.

Team Jeremy Bourgeois and Canales lost to Gage Brymer and Clay Thompson of UCLA 8-1, and Sterling and Rae lost 8-3 against Ryan Cheung and Carly Hernandez of UC Irvine.

In the semifinal match against the no. 1 seed team of McDonald and Karue Sell, team Sargeant and Goryahckov seeded no. 2 lost in a close match of 8-6.

Before their regular season competition, which starts on Saturday, Jan. 11, 2014, the Cougars will participate in one more USTA/ITA competition starting Nov. 7.

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