Harvard Rebounds From Narrow Loss to Down Lions
Harvard (12-8, 1-1 Ivy) went up against Cornell and Columbia this weekend at the Murr Tennis Center in the host’s first Ivy League matches of the season. The Crimson lost a close match to the Big Red on Friday, dropping four singles matches to lose, 4-3, but then rebounded against the Lions the next day for a 5-2 victory.
“It was a devastating loss to Cornell because it was so close,” junior Ali Felton said. “We could have beaten them if things went our way. But we bounced back against Columbia. I think we’ve definitely learned from the match against Cornell. We’re really looking forward to next weekend.”
HARVARD 5, COLUMBIA 2
On Saturday, Harvard showed its resilience and took down last year’s Ivy League champion, Columbia (6-12, 0-2 Ivy), 5-2.
The No. 3 duo of Felton and sophomore Andy Nguyen earned the first doubles win of the day over juniors Rajeev Deb-Sen and Haig Schneiderman. At first down, 3-1, the Crimson fought back to 5-5, to eventually win, 8-6.
The No. 1 team of freshman Casey MacMaster and captain Aba Omodele-Lucien picked up the squad’s second victory to clinch the doubles point, defeating sophomore Nathaniel Gery and senior Kevin Kung, 8-6.
The No. 2 doubles match was more contested, as a tie-break was required to determine the victor. Junior Jon Pearlman and sophomore Josh Tchan were unable to convert on their first match point, but they eventually came through to help Harvard sweep the doubles matches.
In singles play, No. 1 Pearlman displayed impressive form to win his match, 6-2, 6-3. The Crimson also notched victories from Omodele-Lucien, Felton, and MacMaster. Omodele-Lucien and Felton both needed three sets to pull off victory, but MacMaster won decisively, 6-4, 6-2.
The only blemishes on the day’s record were losses by Nguyen and Tchan at the No. 5 and No. 6 spots, respectively. Nguyen lost a tough three-setter 6-4, 2-6, 6-3 to sophomore John Yetimoglu. Tchan faltered in two close sets, 7-6, 6-4.
CORNELL 4, HARVARD 3
The afternoon matches started with the three doubles teams taking the court, hoping to head into singles play a point ahead.
The Crimson’s team of MacMaster and Omodele-Lucien won their match over seniors Andy Gauthier and Jeremy Feldman, 8-5.
By then the Harvard tandem of Felton and Nguyen had fallen to visiting seniors Evan Bernstein and Jonathan Jaklitsch, 8-4.
The deciding match for the doubles point fell on the shoulders of Pearlman and Tchan. They clinched the doubles point with a win over senior Mirza Klis and McElwain, 8-6.
With the Crimson up 1-0, the Big Red’s No. 2 singles player Gauthier evened the score with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Omodele-Lucien.