The Cal Poly men’s tennis team competed at the Big West Conference Championship last week, looking for its third title in five years.
The second-seeded Mustangs dropped a close battle to conference rival UC Santa Barbara in the Big set Championship game on Saturday. Cal Poly lost 4-1, giving the Guachos their second consecutive conference title.
Cal Poly, who was granted a first round bye, played UC Davis on Thursday in the Big West Championship Semifinal.
The Mustangs recorded a 4-2 victory over the Aggies, led by the junior duo Ben Donovan and Corey Pang. Donovan and Pang secured a 6-4 victory, clinching the doubles point for the Mustangs.
Singles victories from Pang, junior Garrett Auproux and freshman Sreyas Kolachalam secured Cal Poly’s victory over UC Davis. Auproux and Kolachalam both gained three set victories to push Cal Poly into the tournament finals.
After a day of rest, Cal Poly walked into the Indian Wells Tennis Garden hoping to avenge its home-court loss to UCSB a week earlier. But the Gauchos were ready to defend their conference title.
After clinching the doubles point early, the Gauchos had the momentum rolling. There were two more singles victories, left only one more victory for a Big West Championship trophy.
Mustangs’ sophomore Axel Damiens halted the momentum with an impressive 6-4, 6-3, victory over UCSB’s Cody Rakela. However, a tough, three-set loss from freshman Josh Ortlip allowed the Gauchos to roll into their second consecutive Big West Conference Championships victory.
Though their season has ended, the Mustangs finished No. 68 nationally and had a 14-10 record, going 5-2 in Big West Conference matchups. Cal Poly begins competition again in September 2016.