p. The men’s tennis team had a busy first week of classes with four matches in five days, finishing the four-match home span at 2-2. The last two matches played both went to the Tribe, giving them momentum as they head into this young season.
p. All four matches were played at the McCormack-Nagelson Tennis Center, with the first match taking place last Wednesday against no. 8 University of Virginia, and ending in a shutout against the College. The U.Va. doubles teams swept the opening play, earning the first team point from the doubles match, giving them the early lead. Senior Colin O’Brien lost to his nationally-ranked singles opponent 6-3, 6-0. Following him in defeat were sophomore Marwan Ramadan, who was defeated 6-0, 6-0, and freshman Keziel Jeneau, who also lost his match 6-1, 6-2. After those losses, Virginia had already claimed the win, but there were still close matches going on with nationally-ranked junior Alex Cojanu, who nearly forced his opponent into a third set but instead fell at 6-3, 7-6(2), and junior Kavi Sud, who lost in the third set 7-5, 2-6, 10-6.
p. The next nationally-ranked team to play the Tribe was no. 13 University of Notre Dame, who also did not allow the Tribe to earn any points in the match, ending the contest 7-0 Saturday. Notre Dame swept the doubles play, forcing the Tribe once again to attempt to overcome an early lead. Cojanu, ranked 49th in the country, went up against an opponent ranked 30th and lost after three sets, 7-6(3), 3-6, 10-5. Sophomore Alex Zuck lost a close match next, falling 6-4, 7-6(6) final score, followed by freshman Richard Wardell, who also lost a set in a tiebreaker and then fell in the second set as well, 7-6(1), 7-5, sealing the win for Notre Dame.
p. The next match, played the following Sunday against the University of Richmond, took a 180-degree turn in the Tribe’s favor, as they handed the Spiders a 7-0 defeat. The Tribe swept the doubles play, with O’Brien and Cojanu improving their season record to 16-6, after a decisive 8-3 win in the top doubles spot.
p. The doubles team of Ramadan and Wardell and the team of Juneau and Sud both won their sets as well, with identical scores of 8-4. Sud swept his opponent in singles, finishing him off 6-0, 6-0, and Wardell was not far behind with a 6-0, 6-1 victory of his own.
p. O’Brien, Cojanu, Juneau and Ramadan all won their singles matches and none let their opponent earn more than four points in a set.
p. The Tribe’s winning streak continued later that day against East Carolina University, allowing ECU only one team point on the scoreboard, winning 6-1. Once again, the Tribe swept doubles play with Ramadan and Wardell starting it off with an 8-3 win, followed by Juneau and Sud sending their opponent home after an 8-5 final score. The 30th-ranked team of O’Brien and Cojanu fought hard for their 9-8(4) victory over their ECU opponents. Zuck made quick work of his singles opponent, with a final score of 6-0, 6-1. Wardell followed in a similar suit with a 6-1, 6-1 victory, but Sud was the next one to finish his sets, losing 6-2, 6-4. Juneau clinched the Tribe win, coming out on top of his opponent, 6-3, 6-3, with Cojanu and O’Brien winning their matches as well, 6-2, 4-6, 6-0, and 6-4, 6-1, respectively.
p. This weekend, the Tribe faces off against no. 24 Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C. Saturday, then goes up against no. 1 University of Georgia in Athens, Ga. Sunday. The team returns home again Friday to the McCormack-Nagelson Tennis Center to take on the University of Michigan.