Vandal Tennis sweeps WAC Championships

Vandal Tennis sweeps WAC Championships
The Idaho Vandal men and women women the WAC Tennis Championships in Las Cruces, NM. (Courtesy Twitter: @Idaho_Vandals)
LAS CRUCES, N.M. – The Idaho men’s and women’s tennis teams each captured Western Athletic Conference championships Sunday as the top-seeded women beat No. 3 New Mexico State 4-1 and the second-seeded Vandal men beat NM State 4-3.

It’s the first WAC championship for both programs.

Galina Bykova clinched the championship for the women, winning 6-1, 6-4 at No. 3 singles after Idaho earned wins at No. 1 from Victoria Lozano, No. 4 from Sophie Vickers, and No. 5 from Belen Barcenilla. The Vandals will enter the NCAA tournament with a 19-5 overall record.

On the men’s side, the Vandals and Aggies split the six singles matches, forcing a winner-take-all doubles competition. The Aggies took the early advantage with an 8-6 win at No. 1 but the Vandals bounced back with 8-6 wins at Nos. 2 and 3 to clinch their first WAC title and a berth into the NCAA tournament.

Artemiy Nikitin, Cristobal Ramos Salazar and Andrew Zedde won their singles matches at Nos. 2, 3, and 6, respectively. Zedde teamed up with Odon Barta to win at No. 2 doubles and Cesar Torres and Nikitin won at No. 3 doubles to clinch the championship. The men improve to 11-13 on the season with the win.

The NCAA tournament brackets for both the men and women will be announced on April 29.