Seniors George Goldhoff and William Jou received a standing ovation Saturday at Caswell Tennis Center prior to No. 8 Texas’ 4-1 win over No. 44 Texas Tech.
Head coach Michael Center and assistant coach Bruce Berque presented the two players with framed “Texas Tennis” t-shirts, a gesture that symbolized their contributions to the program.
“It was a great moment,” Goldhoff said. “For Center to give me the opportunity to not just play but get an education, it’s huge. And to get the win today was perfect.”
Then the Longhorns went to work. After losing its previous two matches, Texas came out on a mission to right the ship.
The burnt orange showed signs of improvement in doubles play, winning two of the first three matches to take a 1-0 lead over the Red Raiders.
“I thought we were a little more aggressive today,” Center said. “We made some plays when we needed to, and getting the doubles point put a lot more pressure on (Texas Tech).”
It didn’t take long for Texas to add to the lead in singles play. Sophomore Rodrigo Banzer made it a 2-0 score, besting Texas Tech’s Carlos DiLaura 7-5, 6-1.
A lineup change by Center proved to be key for the Longhorns as freshman Christian Sigsgaard moved down to the No. 2 spot. Sophomore Harrison Scott assumed the role of the No. 1 spot.
Sigsgaard excelled in the new position, blowing away Bjorn Thomson 6-4, 6-2. After the Red Raiders got on the board, Scott sealed the win with a 6-3, 1-6, 6-2 victory over Jolan Cailleau.
“(Sigsgaard and Scott) were the stars today,” Center said. “Those were two great efforts on their part to help close the match and put us on top.”
Next up for the Longhorns is a road match against No. 9 TCU on April 22. The match marks the end of Texas’ regular season, giving the Longhorns a chance to finish with a statement win.
“TCU is playing as well as anyone in the country,” Center said. “I’m really excited to go up there and see where we’re at. We’re going to go after them.”
The Horned Frogs enter the match on a 10-game winning streak, including wins over No. 12 California and No. 5 Oklahoma State. It’ll take a complete effort for Texas to bring a win back to the 40 Acres.
“It’ll be really tough for us to win if we lose our composure or get too excited,” Goldhoff said. “We just have to stay disciplined and block out the crowd. We can’t let the moment get the best of us.”