San Antonio – Back in San Antonio but not quite at home after three matches on the road, the Rattlers experienced a two-day split this week, losing to Ouachita Baptist University Sunday and coming out victorious over Southeastern Oklahoma State on Monday.
Competing on the Incarnate Word tennis courts, St. Mary’s (3-9, 2-1 in conference) first day saw a lone point in the 8-1 loss to Ouachita Baptist with senior Marcin Marczewski (Warsaw, Poland) defeating Helge Knuth in a 6-3, 6-2 win.
Although Marczewski was the solo point for St. Mary’s on Sunday, it wouldn’t be his only win of the two-day affair as he would go undefeated in all his other matches. Marczewski’s doubles partner Jake Williams (Sr., Dallas) went the distance in his singles match, coming up just short in a 4-6, 6-2, 10-8 loss. The pair competed together to give Knuth and Marvin Muller a run for the point in an 8-5 defeat.
Revved up after the loss, the Rattlers came out strong Monday against Southeastern Oklahoma State. Marczewski led the way with a close 7-6 first set and a smashing 6-1 second set to earn a Rattler point in the 5-2 victory.
Teaming up this time with fellow Rattler Andrej Klipa (Jr., Belgrade, Serbia) on the doubles court didn’t skip a beat in Marczewski’s undefeated trek as they battled for a 9-8 (7-5) win. Klipa also won his singles match in a statement-making 6-0 final set.
Williams went an impressive three sets, 4-6, 6-2, 1-0, before the match was unable to finish, but it was enough to earn another tally for the Rattlers. Reigning Heartland Conference Player of the Week Carlos Olea’s (So., Matamoros, Mexico) singles match told a similar story, swinging through three sets of 3-6, 6-1, 1-1 before the match was called and put Olea in the winner’s circle. Despite Williams and Olea being unable to finish their singles’ matches completely, the duo wasn’t phased as they paired up to defeat Joad and Hansen 8-5 on the doubles court.
Freshman Michael Ortiz (Corpus Christi, Texas) also made waves for St. Mary’s, defeating Burns 7-5, 6-1 in singles.
Seeing both sides of the coin their last two matches hopefully will give the Rattlers enough to work with before their next match against conference foe University of Texas-Permian Basin. St. Mary’s currently holds the No. 1 rank in the conference standings after defeating the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith and shutting out Dallas Baptist last weekend. The Rattlers will face the Falcons on their home court Saturday at 3:30 p.m.