Stiff competition tests Owls in Day One of Penn Invitational

Coach Steve Mauro said he is happy with his men’s tennis squad after it took a step up in competition on the first day of the Penn Invitational Friday.

“I think the guys fought hard and are getting better and better,” Mauro said.

Temple competed against the University of Pennsylvania, St. John’s and University of Buffalo.

Juniors Hicham Belkssir and Nicolas Paulus lost 8-6 in a doubles pro set against St. John’s. Although it was a defeat, Mauro was happy with how both players kept it close.

Belkssir also lost a tight single match against St. John’s in the third set, 6-4.

Junior Santiago Canete won both of his matches in a three-set singles win against Buffalo.

Mauro said one of the biggest factors was the matches were played indoors due to the rain from the day before.

“It wasn’t great for our style because the courts were kind of fast, something that we are not use to,” Mauro said.

Mauro said he was please with the way his team held themselves against its competition and looks forward to the rest of the tournament.

“It was a high level this weekend, I am sure we will do even better tomorrow.” Mauro said.

-Connor Northrup