Lu, King, Z. Wang Record Singles Wins; Bulldogs Take Doubles Point in 4-2 Victory Over Army
WEST POINT, NY – The Yale men's tennis team extended its win streak to three matches on Saturday, topping Army 4-2 in a convincing all-around performance. Despite Army enjoying home court advantage, the Elis looked like the stronger side throughout the morning, with the players at the top of the singles lineup ultimately securing the victory. This victory to open the weekend puts the Bulldogs in good position to win their remaining two matches against Furman and Loyola Marymount.
Saturday's action began with a competitive round of doubles. While senior duo Alex Hagermoser and Photos Photiades fell to Army's Nikit Pereverzin and Grant Riechmann at No. 2 doubles by the score 6-2, freshman pairing Ryan Cheng and Dylan King's decisive 6-3 victory over Army's Myles Conlin and Michael Nguyen at No. 3 doubles meant that the doubles point would come down to the wire. The third and final doubles match, which saw Yale's Tyler Lu and Ziqi Wang face Army's Sam Lampman and Gregory Shannon in the top doubles spot, was a tight affair defined by narrow swings of momentum; the Bulldogs ultimately pulled away with a crucial service break, however, to take the match 6-4 and clinch the doubles point for Yale.
Heading into singles play with a slim lead, the Elis encountered a significant amount of resistance from their opponents early on. Although Yale's Ziqi Wang extended Yale's lead to 2-0 with an impressive 6-3, 6-1 over Army's Lampman at No. 2 singles, the home team bounced back with a pair of wins at the No. 4 and No. 6 spots. Yale freshman Dylan King secured an important victory for the Elis at No. 3 singles, however, with a narrow 6-4, 6-3 win over Army's Riechmann. King has emerged as one of the team's most promising talents this season, and this latest result improved his record to 10-1 in his last 11 singles matches.
With the Bulldogs holding a precarious 3-2 match lead, senior captain Tyler Lu found himself in position to clinch the match at No. 1 singles. After taking the first set easily against Army's Conlin, Lu fell just short of closing out the match in the second, with his opponent winning a tightly contested tiebreak to force a third-set super tiebreak. Fortunately for the Elis, Lu's considerable experience at the top level proved to be the difference, as the senior took the tiebreak 10-3 and clinched victory for Yale. By improving his singles record to 4-1 in his last five matches, Lu continues to make a strong case for an ITA Division I national ranking.
Saturday's 4-2 victory over Army continues Yale's impressive start to the spring season. The unbeaten Bulldogs are set to take the court again later today against Loyola Marymount; the full results of that match, as well as the results of Sunday's clash with Furman, will be covered in tomorrow's recap.
Report by Cameron Ferguson '18, Yale Sports Publicity
FULL MATCH RESULTS – Yale 4, Army 2
Lu/Z. Wang (Yale) def. Lampman/Shannon (Army), 6-4
Riechmann/Pereverzin (Army) def. Hagermoser/Photiades (Yale), 6-2
Cheng/King (Yale) def. Nguyen/Conlin (Army), 6-3
Lu (Yale) def. Nguyen (Army), 6-2; 6-7; 10-3
Z. Wang (Yale) def. Lampman (Army), 6-3; 6-1
King (Yale) def. Riechmann (Army), 6-4; 6-3
Mitchell (Army) def. Cheng (Yale), 6-3; 6-4
Heller (Yale) vs. Pereverzin (Army), DNF
Conlin (Army) def. Photiades (Yale), 6-4; 6-2