George Goldhoff is the lone senior for Texas, and the Longhorns hope to lean on his experience as they begin conference play with a road test against a pair of top-15 opponents.
No. 6 Texas (17–4) carries its four-game winning streak into Norman, Oklahoma Friday for a match against No. 13 Oklahoma, followed by a match against No. 8 Oklahoma State on Sunday. And although the Longhorns hold a record of 12–1 at home, they’re a mere 5–3 outside of Austin.
These struggles on the road are primarily attributed to a lack of experience. The Longhorns only have one senior — tied for their fewest since 2012.
But Goldhoff is providing plenty of leadership as of late. The senior out of Irvine, California is on a three-game win streak in singles play, highlighted by a win over Ohio State’s No. 93 Herkko Pollanen.
The Longhorns are at their best when Goldhoff leads the way — they hold a 7–1 record when their sole senior wins his singles match.
“He sets the tone with his competitiveness,” assistant head coach Bruce Berque said. “When he gets it going, the energy that he brings on the court really spreads to his teammates.”
Goldhoff is the undisputed voice of Texas. His voice echoes through the stadium as he cheers on his teammates in key moments, constantly providing support.
“I always try to be vocal,” Goldhoff said. “Some of the younger guys are more quiet and calm, but my role is to bring as much energy to the team as I can.”
That energy is exactly what the Longhorns need this weekend as they begin conference play.
Texas struggled against Oklahoma last season. The Sooners went 2–0 against the burnt-orange including a 4–1 victory in the Big 12 Championship.
It’s been a different story against Oklahoma State. The Longhorns haven’t lost to the Cowboys since 2007. The 14-game win streak includes a 4–2 victory earlier this season in the ITA National Team Indoor Championships.
But with both matches in enemy territory, Texas is at a disadvantage. It’ll take a group effort from the Longhorns to return to the 40 Acres with a pair of wins.
“Everybody is going to have to show up,” Goldhoff said. “These teams have a good player at every spot, so we’ll need to execute in order to win.”
Texas is scheduled to begin its match against Oklahoma on Friday at 6 p.m.