SACRAMENTO -- Down, 3-1, Sacramento State picked up three straight singles wins from Hermont Legaspi, Liam Liles and Rudolfs Aksenoks, respectively, to beat Nevada, 4-3, at the campus tennis courts Thursday afternoon.
With the victory, the Hornets (1-2) won their first match of the season and did so in dramatic fashion. It was Aksenoks that saved two match points in the second set of his match before winning in three, and Liles saved a match point in the second frame of his three-set victory.
The Wolf Pack (0-1) were playing their first match of the season.
The comeback began when Legaspi got the Hornets within, 3-2, after his win at No. 1 over Isaac Nortey, 6-4, 6-2. Then it was Liles that tied things at 3-3 when he won his match at No. 3 by a 1-6, 7-6 (5), 6-4 score. That's when Aksenoks came through with the match clincher at No. 5 over Loris Zisswiller by a 4-6, 7-5, 6-3 score. Aksenoks trailed, 30-40, and 4-5 in the second set when he saved back-to-back match points before eventually completing the comeback.
Making things even sweeter is three of the Hornets' four singles wins came from freshmen - Jan Silva, Liles and Aksenoks. Silva won his match at No. 6 by a 6-4, 6-1 score. The Hornets' Mark Keki, also a freshman, lost his match at No. 2 in three sets, and senior Michael Vizcarra lost his match at No. 4 in straight sets.
Nevada won the doubles point, picking up victories at Nos. 1 and 3 doubles.
"Today was a big team win, and we are extremely proud of how hard the guys are working and for their resilience," Sacramento State head coach Kevin Kurtz said. "We held off match points on two different courts, and just kept competing. We are a young team, and keep getting better every day."
The Hornets are in the midst of a 12-game homestand to start the season, and will play on campus again on Saturday vs. Grand Canyon at 10 a.m.
Sacramento State 4, Nevada 3
1. Legaspi, Hermont (SAC) def. Isaac Nortey (NEV) 6-4, 6-2
2. Delmas N'tcha (NEV) def. Keki, Mark (SAC) 3-6, 6-3, 6-2
3. Liles, Liam (SAC) def. Juan Batalla (NEV) 1-6, 7-6 (7-5), 6-4
4. Satchel Benn (NEV) def. Vizcarra, Michael (SAC) 6-1, 6-0
5. Aksenoks, Rudolfs (SAC) def. Loris Zisswiller (NEV) 4-6, 7-5, 6-3
6. Silva, Jan (SAC) def. Gvidas Motuzas (NEV) 6-4, 6-1
1. Juan Batalla/Isaac Nortey (NEV) def. Keki, Mark/Liles, Liam (SAC) 6-3
2. Legaspi, Hermont/Vizcarra, Michael (SAC) vs. Loris Zisswiller/Satchel Benn (NEV) 3-5, unfinished
3. Benjamin Campi/Matheo Coupu (NEV) def. Silva, Jan/Aksenoks, Rudolfs (SAC) 6-4
Sacramento State 1-2
Order of finish: Doubles (1,3); Singles (4,6,2,1,3,5)
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