OXFORD, Miss. - The Ole Miss men's tennis team picked up three wins against Arkansas-Pine Bluff here Wednesday at the Palmer/Salloum Tennis Center, as they get ready to host No. 10 Texas A&M in the final regular season SEC match of the year.
The Rebels will celebrate senior Johan Backstrom as well as head coach Billy Chadwick's final SEC home match. Fans coming to the match will receive a commemorative Billy Chadwick collector's cup, free Ole Miss Tennis candy bars and a collector poster of Backstrom.
"Texas A&M is ranked top 10 in the country, and they're tied for the top spot in the conference," Chadwick said. "We know that they are one of the nation's best. We feel like we are starting to play our best tennis. This is our last SEC home match, and we are looking forward to having a great crowd and closing out the regular season on a high note."
The Rebels are led by junior Nik Scholtz, who comes in ranked No. 22 in the nation with a 10-1 record at No. 1 singles, 5-1 in the SEC. He will get another opportunity for a top-20 win, as he faces 14th-ranked Harrison Adams of the Aggies.
Texas A&M comes into Friday's match at 20-5 overall and tied atop the SEC standings at 9-1. The Aggies lone SEC loss came at Kentucky, 4-0. Adams owns a 23-9 overall record, 7-5 at No. 1 singles. The Aggies also boast the No. 6 ranked doubles team in the nation, Junior Ore and Jackson Withrow, who are 9-2 at No. 1 doubles.
"My dad was an Aggie. He has passed away, but I am in hopes that he will give us a little help from above to beat the Aggies," said Chadwick with a smile on his face.
Friday will mark the last SEC match for Backstrom, who has been involved in many big matches for the Rebels, but this one is a little more special.
"This is a huge match, and a very exciting one, especially for me," Backstrom said. "I was actually recruited by both schools. I know their coaches very well. Like my dad said, the circle is complete. I was choosing between Ole Miss and Texas A&M, and my very last home SEC match happens to be against them. It's going to be a special day."
Not only will it be Backstrom's last SEC match at the Galtney Courts, but it will be a farewell for Chadwick, who has witnessed many big wins at the tennis center during his illustrious 35-year career that will come to a close at the end of the season.
"The season has been such a whirlwind, that you are just focused on each match, I haven't really thought about it," Chadwick said. In this short time period of the Aggies joining the conference, it's turned into a big rivalry. We've played them several times, including in the NCAAs, but never here."
It's been a difficult season for the Rebels record-wise, but Chadwick and the team are excited about the opportunity.
"We need to play a great match from top to bottom," Chadwick said. "We've played very well at different spots on different days. We need to put it all together. I felt like our best match was down in Florida. Even though we lost, we really played a good match from top to bottom. We're looking to build on that."
"It's a great opportunity for us. We have nothing to lose," Backstrom added. "The effort has been there, it's just a few points that separate a lot of teams in the SEC. Hopefully we can all play well and have one go our way."
Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE ATLANTA - On Saturday, fans can tune in to see the Rebels duo of Head Football Coach Hugh Freeze and former Ole Miss basketball player Sean Tuohy compete in the Chick-fil-A... read more
Only 50 days until The Grove is full, the constant shouts of "Hotty Toddy" are in the air, and football kicks off 100 years in Vaught-Hemingway Stadium! Looking forward to this upcoming college football season, seven Rebels were named to... read more
As we near the 2015 college football season, national organizations have started to release watch lists for their respective awards. Through the first week of watch lists being released, multiple Rebels have been announced as players that fans need to... read more
Along with head coach Hugh Freeze, three Rebels will represent Ole Miss at the annual SEC Football Media Days next week. Junior Evan Engram, just named to the John Mackey Award Watch List for college football's most outstanding tight end,... read more
Five Ole Miss Rebels were chosen as preseason All-SEC selections by some of the people who work closest with the student-athletes, the football media relations directors. The 14 football media relations directors of the Southeastern Conference institutions voted in the... read more
The preseason accolades just don't stop for the Ole Miss football team. Everywhere you look, Rebels can be found on preseason All-America teams. Lindy's Sports recognized seven Rebels for preseason honors, including four All-Americans. Four Ole Miss Football Rebels were... read more
With the season just 74 days away, members of the 2015 Ole Miss football team continue to earn recognition on Preseason All-America lists. Athlon Sports, the latest media outlet to release its 2015 college football preseason All-America team, gave five... read more
Preseason All-America football teams continue to roll in, and Ole Miss has been well represented each time.Today, the Sporting News unveiled its preseason All-America first and second teams, which includes a total of four Rebels.OT Laremy Tunsil and DT Robert... read more
Individual preseason accolades continue to pile up for the Ole Miss football team as college football magazines look toward the 2015 season. Athlon Sports is the latest magazine to release its preseason all-conference teams, June 10; the magazine named nine... read more
The start of summer heat and vacations is also the start of another tradition - preseason college football magazines.One of the first to produce a magazine every year is Phil Steele, whose 2015 version includes about as many Ole Miss... read more
Although they will not begin competing for the Rebels until the fall, several members of the 2015 signing class have arrived at Ole Miss to begin their college journey this summer. The first of two summer sessions offered at the... read more
Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewApril 28-May 4, 2015Baseball - The Rebels started the week defeating the Bulldogs, 11-1 in the annual Governor's Cup. The 10-run win for the Rebels marked the largest margin of victory in the 36-year history... read more
Welcome to Pittsburgh...and welcome to #SteelersNation, @Quez_G! #SteelersDraft pic.twitter.com/oY8wZc10Kk-- Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) May 2, 2015 Congrats Senquez Golson! Drafted 56th overall in the 2015 #NFLDRAFT by the Pittsburgh Steelers. #HottyToddy #FinsUp pic.twitter.com/EPGayDNOu7-- Ole Miss Football (@OleMissFB) May 2, 2015 Ole... read more
Six men with ties to Ole Miss were part of the inaugural class of 25 athletes and coaches inducted into the Scott County Hall of Fame this past Saturday at Roosevelt State Park in Morton. It is believed that this... read more