No. 65 Crimson Batters Yale, Loses in Final Home Contest
As the Harvard men’s tennis team demonstrated this weekend, all-time records often have little bearing on the winner of the current matchup.
The Crimson faced off against the Yale Bulldogs and the Brown Bears this weekend in the 90th and 80th meetings between the teams, respectively.
Harvard (14-10, 3-3 Ivy) picked up a 5-2 win on Friday in New Haven, Conn., against Yale (10-11, 2-4) to go up in the head-to-head record, 64-26.
The Crimson, however, could not carry the momentum forward against Brown (15-6, 2-4).
Harvard had held an impressive 73-6 edge in past meetings going into yesterday’s matchup, but it lost its final home match of the season to the Bears, 4-3.
“They were both good matches,” assistant coach Andrew Rueb said. “The league this year has been astonishingly close. I don’t think it’s ever seen this many 4-3 matches. With that razor edge of difference, sometimes you’re on the winning side, and sometimes you’re on the losing side.”
BROWN 4, NO. 65 HARVARD 3
Harvard started the matchup against Brown by picking up the doubles point for the second time in two matches this weekend.
Junior Ali Felton and sophomore Andy Nguyen dominated their opposing pair, 8-3, to earn the squad’s first win yesterday afternoon.
Captain Aba Omodele-Lucien and freshman Casey MacMaster followed up with an 8-6 victory, capturing the doubles point on a Brown forced error off of Omodele-Lucien’s big serve on match point.
The Crimson, however, did not produce the same level of play in the singles, as four of Harvard’s six players lost their matches.
Felton and Nguyen both lost in straight sets, 6-4, 6-2 and 6-3, 6-3, respectively. Omodele-Lucien progressed through the first set easily, taking it, 6-1, but his opponent, Sam Fife, turned the match on its head in the second and third sets.
Despite fighting off three break points early on in the third set, Omodele-Lucien dropped the last five games for a 1-6, 6-1, 6-1 loss.
Junior Jon Pearlman and sophomore Josh Tchan were the two singles winners for the Crimson. The two players had to battle—especially in the second set—but they both pulled out 6-2, 6-4 victories.
“There was a long game of about 10 or 15 deuce points at 3-all when he was serving, and I think it wore him down,” Pearlman said. “After that game, I won the next four games pretty easily. I think he was fatigued from that game and I put the pressure on him too.”