They came close, again.

Georgetown’s men tennis team started off its Big East campaign with a tightly contested match against Rutgers on Sunday, ultimately losing 4-3.

The Hoyas lost all three doubles matches by the same score line, 4-8, to hand the Scarlet Knights the early advantage.

“Our doubles team did not play and serve well,” Georgetown Head Coach Rich Bausch said.

The singles matches went down to the wire with both teams winning three each. All the singles victories came in straight sets, with the Hoyas winning at the No. 4, 5 and 6 singles. Junior Eric Conrad beat junior Jonathan Wanono 6-4, 6-4, and sophomore Scott Faust overcame junior Gabe Adams, defeating him 6-2, 6-3. Freshman Scott Maucher defeated sophomore Roberto Baggio 6-3, 6-4.

With the overall score tied at 3-3, victory could have gone either way depending on the match between Georgetown senior Erik Bildman and Rutgers sophomore Matthew Fawcett. After losing the first set, 4-6, Bildman had to win the second one to keep the Hoyas in the game. The second set went to a tie breaker. Serving at 6-5, Bildman had a set point, but he could not convert it. Fawcett won the tightly contested tiebreaker and as a result the match, 6-4, 7-6 (6).

“Erik played well, but he can play much better,” Bausch said. “Matthew played wonderfully. Unfortunately, Erik was playing from behind the baseline the entire match.”

The result was a 4-3 loss for the Hoyas, who, like in the past, came so close but just could not cross the final hurdle.

“Rutgers played better. They won. We did not lose,” Bausch said.

“Playing these tough matches is a good experience. We will be a better team as a result of this match,” Bausch said. He said that the doubles team will focus on improving by serving better and playing more from the baseline instead of far behind it.

The men’s team has a three-week break coming up. They next play host to the University of Maryland-Baltimore County on Mar. 16.

While the men were battling Rutgers, the women were in New York playing their second Big East opponents of the season, St. John’s.

Georgetown was coming from a victory against archrivals George Washington and St. John’s on a three-match losing streak, but the Red Storm took the upper hand Saturday. Georgetown lost 6-1 to St. John’s, putting the Hoyas at 1-1 in the conference and 2-4 overall.

The Hoyas started well in the doubles portion of the game, but once again the pressure was applied with no success. Georgetown senior Liddy Bartell and freshman Adriann Gin lost the first match 9-7. Hoya freshmen Elizabeth Winokur and Stephanie Cohen were also playing well, but the Scartlet Knights’ junior Lauren Leo and freshman Mariana Chachua came from behind to win 8-6, giving St. John’s the doubles point. The last doubles game finished the Red Storm sweep as senior Kristina Bothova and junior Lauren Lorenzetti beat junior Kristin Dew and sophomore Sana Malouf 8-1.

“We had a good chance to win the doubles, but ended up short. As a result St. Johns got the advantage and the momentum. A win in the doubles would have had given the team impetus and leading to a better performance, and quite possibly victory in the singles,” Bausch said.

The Hoyas then lost all their singles matches in straight sets. The score line could have been worse had it not been for an injury that forced Leo to forfeit the game to Bartell, who was leading 5-4 in the first set at that point.

“We were outplayed,” Bausch said.

Bausch was confident for the coming home matches though he said that Georgetown was not at their best and did not play as well as it had played against George Washington.

The women’s tennis team has two big matches coming up this weekend as they play host to Big East opponent Seton Hall on Saturday and local rival George Mason on Sunday.

“It will be good to play two crucial matches at home,” Bausch said.

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