San Antonio – A birthday celebration of a day of hard serves greeted Rattler Marcin Marczewski Thursday as St. Mary’s opened up its spring season with a calculated pair of matches against a skilled Division I team, Texas A&M–Corpus Christi.

The St. Mary’s men’s tennis team (0-2) has received a gift of its own this season in a new and determined coaching staff. Head coach Lisa Dausin demonstrated her desires for her team to reach its full potential by scheduling the Rattlers to face the nationally ranked, Division I Islanders (4-3).

But Texas A&M–Corpus Christi didn’t falter its playing style for the Division II Rattlers, sweeping St. Mary’s in the season-opening doubleheader, 7-0 and 4-0. The Rattlers were a challenge to the Islanders, however, with the birthday boy and his fellow Rattlers gearing up in both the singles and doubles matches.

In the first match of the two-match series, Marczewski (Sr., Warsaw, Poland) matched up for a tough loss against Islander Peter Nagy, 6-2, 6-2 while a court over, Andrej Klipa (Jr., Belgrade, Serbia) faced Aure Tave to a 6-3, 6-1 defeat. On the doubles side, Marczewski and Jake Williams (Sr., Dallas) teamed up to give Nagy and Gergo Weindinger a challenge for an 8-2 defeat, and Carlos Olea (Matamoros, Mexico) and Nestor Moreno (Bogota, Colombia) served against Andrew Maigot and Alex Pavlov for a close-call loss of 8-4.

The second half of the doubleheader was cut short with two matches unable to finish, but saw appearances from two Rattler newcomers. Mateo Martinez (Fr., San Antonio, Texas) opened his career with a 6-1, 6-1 defeat while another newbie, Michael Oritz (Corpus Christi, Texas), had a 6-0, 6-2 defeat.

Although the Rattlers begin the season with an 0-2 record, their doubleheader has prepared them for the competitive year ahead.

St. Mary’s jumps into its next match this Saturday against the University of Texas–Pan American on the Rattler tennis courts at 12 p.m.

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