Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022

No. 4 Texas celebrates its seniors and its final regular season Big 12 conference title

Kennedy Weatherby

Celebrating its six seniors on senior day, No.4 Texas prevailed in a 7-0 sweep over No. 37 Baylor at the Texas Tennis Center on Saturday afternoon to win the outright Big 12 regular season title for the seventh and final time in school history. 

While Texas will likely host the first two rounds of the NCAA tournament, the Burnt Orange faithful showed up in strong numbers for the Longhorns’ final Big 12 regular season game. 

In doubles, the entire Texas lineup was comprised of seniors, all of whom showed out to secure the point for the Longhorns. 

The No. 35 pair Eliot Spizzirri and Siem Woldeab dominated Baylor’s No. 33 pairing of Hungarian sophomore Zsombor Velcz and Czech senior Tadeas Paroulek 6-1. Shortly after, Texas’ Micah Braswell and Cleeve Harper prevailed 6-4 over Danish junior Oskar Brostrom and South African freshman Devin Badenhorst to clinch the doubles point for the Longhorns. 

“Me and Micah (Braswell) have been on a bit of a roll so far,” Harper said. “We’ve been playing really well together. So I’m happy with the way we’ve been going and progressing.”

In the third doubles match that went unfinished, Evin McDonald, who is usually a secondary choice in the doubles format, got to play with fellow senior Eshan Talluri against German senior Christopher Frantzen and English freshman Louis Bowden, in a testament to both of their service to the program. 

In singles, Harper, one of the only unranked players in the Texas lineup, started scorching hot with a 6-0 run to take the first set and the first game of the second. While Brostrom would respond to make the second set more competitive, Harper’s powerful returns throughout the match proved to be too much for the Danish, winning the second set 6-3 to secure the first singles point for the Longhorns. 

“(In) singles (I) got off to a good start,” Harper said. “I’ve done that in quite a lot of my matches lately, which has been nice. I’ve had a few ups and downs in some of the other matches, but I’ve been able to at least for the last few I’ve been able to keep it going after the first set, which is good, and, yeah, I’ve been playing some good tennis.”

Next to finish was Spizzirri, who won 6-2, 6-2 on court one over No. 90 Velcz. The match never looked in doubt, as the nation’s top singles player only briefly trailed to begin the second set. On match point, Velcz left a return too short, giving Spizzirri the match and putting the Longhorns on the precipice of victory only minutes after Harper’s victory. 

After a back-and-forth first set between Braswell and No. 62 Paroulek on court two that included the latter throwing his racquet in frustration, the No. 2 singles player in the nation dominated the second set, winning his match 7-5, 6-1, and clinching the match for Texas. 

“I told my coach I’m gonna loosen up with my forehand,” Braswell said. “When I’m playing my best tennis I’m always really loose with my forehand, I’m going for my shots and I’m coming in and attacking the net putting a lot of pressure on him. So I did that really well in the second (set).”

This win extended the player from Sarasota, Florida’s 30-match winning streak dating back to the fall and gave him his 112th all-time singles win, tied with Royce Deppe for fourth all-time in school history. 

Texas, now sitting at 19–3 on the year and 7–0 in conference play, will next head to its final Big 12 Tournament in Stillwater, Oklahoma, where it will play the No. 8 seed, either Texas Tech or BYU, in the quarterfinals on Friday. 

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