FRESNO, Calif. – Second-seeded New Mexico defeated Air Force 4-0 on Thursday afternoon to earn a spot in the Mountain West Men’s Tennis Championships semifinals. The Lobos (19-7) will face off against the No. 3 seed San Diego State Aztecs (12-11) on Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m. PT.
The Lobos started the match by winning the doubles point. No. 3 doubles team Mads Hegelund and Andrew Van Der Vyver recorded a quick 8-3 win against AFA’s Grant Taylor and Lucas Fumagalli. All-Conference Honorees James Hignett and Samir Iftikhar clinched the point for UNM with a victory in the No. 1 position.
UNM claimed the match after tallying three singles victories.
Iftikhar earned the second point of the match for the Lobo’s with his 6-2, 6-2 victory over Andy Jackson in the No. 1 spot. Hignett followed closely behind with another Lobo win in the No. 5 position. Van Der Vyver clinched the MW quarterfinal match with his 6-4, 6-4 win against Alex Grubbs.
All other matches went unfinished.
Saturday’s semifinal match up will be the first meeting this season between the Aztecs and the Lobos, but the situation is all-too familiar. UNM faced SDSU last year in the semifinals of the championships. The Lobos prevailed, 4-2.
It will be a tough match up as both opponents battle for a spot in the championship.
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Result: New Mexico def. Air Force, 4-0
1) Iftikhar (UNM) def. Jackson (AFA), 6-2, 6-2
2) Sabatka (UNM) & McCullers (AFA), 7-6 (11-9), 6-5, DNF
3) Jauregui (UNM) & Young (AFA), 5-7, 3-1, DNF
4) Van Der Vyver (UNM) def. Grubbs (AFA), 6-4, 6-4
5) Hignett (UNM) def. Fumagalli (AFA), 6-2, 6-3
6) Hegelund (UNM) & Parks (AFA), 6-4, 4-4, DNF
Order of Finish: (1,5,4)
1) Hignett/Iftikhar (UNM)def. Young/Jackson (AFA), 8-4
2) Sabatka/Jauregui (UNM) & Grubbs/McCullers (AFA), DNF
3) Van Der Vyver/Hegelund (UNM) def. Taylor/Fumagalli (AFA), 8-3
Order of Finish: (3,1)