Looking to build off its win against No. 47 University of California Irvine on Saturday, the Ball State University men's tennis team ran into an unexpected wall on Sunday in the second day of the Boise State Invitational.
After splitting its first two matches in the invitational on Saturday, Ball State faced California Polytechnic State University in its last match. Cal Poly came into the match with a 3-10 record on year.
"They are a really good team and are a lot better than their record shows," coach Bill Richards said. "They have played a tough schedule and lost to a lot of nationally-ranked teams. We maybe underestimated them a little bit."
Cal Poly didn't waste any time in showing it was there to play. After getting out to a fast start in doubles, Cal Poly cruised to a 6-1 win with four straight-set wins in singles.
"It was tough match because they are probably one of the top three teams we have played so far this year," Andres Monroy said. "We didn't know much about them and they came out and played a really good match."
Richards said it was tough to get a good read on Cal Poly.
"What really tricked us was Purdue, who beat [Cal Poly on Saturday]," Richards said. "They are actually a much better team than Purdue. We really let our guard down after a good win [Saturday]."
One of the biggest concerns for the Cardinals is the letdown after a quality win. Players can't seem to figure out why the team is so inconsistent.
"I really can't say why we keep having these problems," Dalton Albertin said. "We are a pretty young team so that could have a little to do with it. Normally we are good about coming out with energy. It would be a good thing to find out."
With the loss, the Cardinals finished the Invitational with a 1-2 record. Despite the losses, Richards still thinks the trip was beneficial.
"We played three quality teams and got one good win," Richards said. "[Sunday] was a downer, but we got to see the level of play we are going to need in conference to win."
Next up for Ball State is the University of Toledo. The match marks the beginning of Mid-American Conference play for the Cardinals.
"We need to prove we are capable of winning against these teams, because we haven't won the conference since 2006," Monroy said. "We have talent from [No.] 1 to 6 in singles and [No.] 1 to 3 in doubles. We just have to believe in ourselves and go out there and do it."