The Harvard men's tennis team--sporting tans from its Spring Break trip to California--took to the courts yesterday afternoon against Columbia, the defending Eastern Intercollegiate Tennis Association (EITA), and reduced the Lions to a whimper with a 6-1 win at Palmer Dixon Courts. Columbia 1 Harvard 6
The Crimson (9-7, 2-0 EITA)--who dropped all five matches out West--was in its second EITA match of the season.
"We've never really had a losing streak like the one we had in California," captain Andrew Rueb said. "We were really looking for a good win."
It was Columbia (10-2, 3-1 EITA), however, who came out fired up in the doubles matches and stunned Harvard by winning two of the three matches to garner the doubles point.
"We've been spending a lot of practice time on doubles," Rueb said. "So it was disappointing to lose like that."
Rueb and sophomore Mitty Arnold teamed up at first doubles, winning in convincing fashion, 8-2.
At second doubles, sophomore Josh Hausman and freshman Tom Blake dropped an 8-4 decision.
"We came in a little flat," Hausman said. "We were expecting just to win because we played a lot stronger opponents in California. We got off to a slow start and never really gotinto the match."
The duo of junior Adam Valkin and freshman Philip Tseng also dropped their third doubles match, 8-4.
"We have to be a little more aggressive at the net," Valkin said. "There wasn't enough movement at the net today."
"It seemed like we were just waiting and seeing what was going to happen in doubles," junior Dan Chung said. "Coach [Dave Fish] told us in the meeting after the doubles matches to really go after it."
The singles play began with the first, third and fifth singles matches taking the courts, and the Crimson quickly put to rest any notions the Lions might have had of sneaking out of Cambridge with a win.
Arnold began the onslaught with a dominating 6-1, 6-1 win at third singles, and the rout was on. The Crimson's superior talent at the singles positions left the Columbia foes defeated in its wake.
Rueb at first singles and Chung at fifth singles completed the Crimson sweep of the first set of singles matches, winning 6-3, 7-6, and 6-1, 6-4, respectively.
"We started out the singles matches really well," Chung said. "And that really set the tone for the rest of the matches."