The University of New Mexico men’s tennis team beat the Boise State University Broncos 4-0 Sunday, April 10 in Albuquerque. The Lobos have a losing record of 8-10 on the season but are 2-1 so far in conference play. 

Boise State is having a strong season with a 13-8 overall record and 2-2 record in conference play. Bronco Simon Arca Costas started the day on a five-game win streak with a 17-8 singles record, but Lobo Rafael Abdulsalam was able to break the streak in their singles match.

In the doubles matches, Lobos Alex Maggs and Jan Pucalka went against Broncos James Van Herzeele and Jan Lucca Marquardt. The Broncos won the first point, but Maggs and Pucalka went on a streak, winning the next four and bringing the score to 4-1. Maggs and Pucalka were ultimately able to win 6-2. Lobos Rafael Abdulsalam and Georgio Samaha dominated their match, going up 5-0 at one point and winning 6-1. 



Lobos Nicolas Prieto and Arda Azkara went against Broncos Arca Costas and Caden Moortgat. The match was close, with the Broncos up 5-4 at one point, but the match was left unfinished upon the Lobos winning the other two doubles matches. The Lobos won the doubles point and went into the singles leading 1-0.

In the singles matches, Abdulsalam dominated Arca Costas 6-1 in their first set and did not allow Arca Costas to score again, winning the second set 6-0 and ending Arca Costas’ win streak, giving the Lobos a 2-0 lead. Samaha played against Van Herzeele and won their first set 6-3. Van Herzeele battled back in the second set, but Samaha was able to win 6-4, putting UNM up 3-0 and one point away from a team win.

Lobo Aram Norozzian lost the first set of his singles match against Marquardt 6-2 but battled back and won 6-3 in the second set. In the third set, both sides were tied at 4-4, but Norozzian pulled away with the lead winning 6-4 and gaining the final point for a 4-0 Lobos win.

Maggs split his first two singles sets, losing 6-4 and then winning 6-3 and was up 2-1 in the third set before the match was left unfinished. Pucalka also split his first two sets but was up 3-1 in the third set before it too was left unfinished. Azkara went against Pedro Liborio, going down 3-1 in the first set. Azkara battled back and tied it up 6-6. He then won the tiebreaker point and the set 7-6 but was behind 4-2 in the second set before the match was left unfinished. 

After the match, UNM head coach Chris Russell said the key to this win was staying mentally strong and not getting discouraged with the high winds. When asked about winning seven of their eight wins at home, he credited the fans.

“We love playing at home,” Russell said. ”We got a great crowd. We really appreciate it because they make a difference.”

The men’s tennis team next plays April 14 at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, who has a record of 12-11 and are 1-2 in conference play.

Thomas Bulger is a freelance reporter for the Daily Lobo. He can be contacted at sports@dailylobo.com or on Twitter @thomasbulger10