The Texas Tech tennis program has 16 student-athletes who will begin the 2019-2020 season at the Midland Invite this weekend.
The men’s team has one freshman joining the Red Raiders while the women’s team has four freshmen, according to Tech Athletics.
Redshirt freshman Lorenzo Battista is the lone freshman on the men’s team, according to Tech Athletics. Battista went 1-1 in dual matches and won his first collegiate match 6-1, 6-4 against Grant Pertile of Bryant University on Jan. 11. The Jesi, Italy, native paired up with senior Jackson Cobb for two doubles matches and did not play in the spring season.
Sophomore Franco Ribero ended his freshman year with a 15-8 singles record, according to Tech Athletics. The Rafaela, Argentina, native played on the fifth and sixth courts last season and won the first seven matches of his career.
Ribero’s first match-clinching victory came on Feb. 11, against Tulane’s Akos Kotorman, according to Tech Athletics. Ribero ended non-conference play with five consecutive wins and defeated Oklahoma’s Jochen Bertsch for his only conference win last season.
Sophomore Francisco Vittar has yet to play as a Red Raider, according to Tech Athletics. However, before Vittar came to Tech, he was ranked No. 20 in the TF Juniors world rankings and was ranked 1,480 in the ATP rankings.
As one of the two juniors on the team, Justin Bloss posted a 9-9 singles record after his first year of play, according to Tech Athletics. The El Paso native earned a 9-7 doubles record while playing with five different partners.
Bloss earned 10 total wins in singles and doubles play his sophomore year, according to Tech Athletics. Four of the 10 total wins came in doubles play at Chowder Fest with former Red Raider Matheus Leite as his partner.
Before coming to Tech, junior Ilgiz Valiev was a member of the Russian National Team who won the 2015-16 Russian Tam Championship, according to Tech Athletics. In his freshman year at Tech, Valiev went 17-9 in singles play – all matches coming in the spring season.
The Ufa, Russia, native had 10 victories in straight sets, according to Tech Athletics. Valiev and his doubles partner, former Red Raider Artem Kapshuk, had a 14-10 record in the spring season as a duo.
Valiev led the team with 21 wins his sophomore year with an 11-9 record in dual play, according to Tech Athletics. Valiev won four of the last five non-conference matches to conclude the fall season. He picked up the spring season with two consecutive wins and helped Tech beat No. 6 Baylor with a three-set win over No. 94 Adrian Boitan.
In the spring season, Valiev earned the Big 12 Individual Champion at the No. 3 position, according to Tech Athletics. Valiev also earned All-Big 12 Academic First Team for the first time in his collegiate career.
As the team’s only redshirt senior, Bjorn Thompson started his career at Tech with a 14-3 record, according to Tech Athletics. The Birmingham, United Kingdom, native did not play his junior year because of an injury. Thompson’s 2018-2019 season included having 12 singles wins and earning All-Big 12 First Team honors in doubles with his partner senior Parker Wynn.
Wynn spent his first two college careers at Louisville where he made two appearances in the NCAA Doubles Championships, according to Tech Athletics. In his junior year, Wynn posted a 16-8 singles record and had a three-match win streak to start the spring season.
Cobb started his career at Tech with a 9-19 singles record and earned a spot on the All-Big 12 Academic Rookie Team, according to Tech Athletics. In his sophomore season, Cobb posted a 24-14 doubles record that he shared with five different partners. The Austin native earned a spot on the All-Big 12 Academic Second Team his junior year, as he went on a four-match win streak in dual play.
On the women’s team, freshman Lisa Mays joins the Lady Raiders with 66-22 all-time singles record and a 52-38 doubles record in high school and junior play, according to Tech Athletics. Mays came to Lubbock from Sydney, Australia and will be a true freshman this season.
The second freshman to join the Lady Raider, Kira Reuter from Suffolk, England has already won three straight British tour titles prior coming to Tech, according to Tech Athletics.
Margarita Skryabina is the third and final freshman on the women’s team and came to Tech as the No. 2 ranked junior in Russia, according to Tech Athletics. During her time in Russia, Skryabina was ranked as high as No. 649 and is a member of the Russian National Team.
Sophomore Olivia Peet went 6-3 in singles and 7-4 in doubles play in the fall season, according to Tech Athletics. The Manchester, England, native paired up with former Lady Raider Sydney Jones to post a 7-1 doubles record.
During the spring season, Peet posted a 10-10 overall record including a 4-7 doubles record, according to Tech Athletics. Peet had her first Big 12 win over West Virginia’s Anne-Sophie Courteau while playing in the No. 5 position last season.
Sophomore Nell Miller ended the fall season with a 5-5 record in singles play, according to Tech Athletics. Miller and former Lady Raider, Felicity Maltby were ranked No. 53 in the preseason poll and went 6-4 during the fall.
Miller played in the No. 2 position during the spring season and posted a 7-13 overall record, according to Tech Athletics. The Kent, England, native won her first match against a ranked opponent when she beat NC State’s No. 111 Alana Smith last season.
Sophomore Isa DiLaura went 3-5 in singles play in the fall and advanced to the Round 16 at the Racquet Club Collegiate Invitational last season, according to Tech Athletics. DiLaura paired up with former Lady Raider Francesca Sella and senior Reagon Collins to play doubles in the Orlando Invitational but lost both matches.
Sophomore Kennedy Bridgforth had a 5-4 record in the fall season and went 4-1 in doubles with former Lady Raider Lana Rush, according to Tech Athletics. Bridgforth had a 5-3 record over Big 12 opponents and earned Big 12 All-Freshman Team.
Collins is the lone senior on the Lady Raider squad and had a 9-3 record her junior year, according to Tech Athletics. In the fall season, the Lubbock native recorded a 0-2 in singles play and 0-1 in doubles matches.
The team will begin the 2019-2020 season in the Midland Invitational Friday to Sunday, according to Tech Athletics.