Bulldogs (7-3) Prepare to Host Brown (8-2) in First Match of Ivy League Season
NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Following back-to-back victories over Elon and Old Dominion this past weekend, the Yale men's tennis team will host conference opponent Brown on Sunday in the first match of the Ivy League season. Despite the considerable strength of their opponent (Brown boasts an 8-2 spring record), the Bulldogs certainly will not lack confidence given their exceptional form of late; the Elis (7-3) have been one of the most impressive teams in the Northeast Region this spring, most recently rising to No. 45 in the ITA national rankings after recording three straight victories over strong opposition. The Bulldogs will have the added motivation of avenging a loss in this fixture last year, which saw them fall 4-3 to Brown in the closest match of the season. So, by securing a win at home on Sunday, Yale would not only begin Ivy League competition on the right foot, but also show its considerable improvement over the past year.
Brown's spring campaign thus far has featured highlight victories over Boston College and Elon and a pair of defeats to Buffalo and William & Mary; Yale beat both of these teams earlier in the spring. Brown's Aaron Sandberg has been a standout performer this year at the top of the Bears' singles lineup, posting a 7-2 record in his last nine singles matches; Yale's Tyler Lu will face him riding a hot streak of his own, however, as the Bulldog has won his last seven matches in convincing fashion. Brown's Charles Tan has also performed well this spring with an undefeated singles record, and will likely pose a threat to Yale's Andrew Heller at the No. 6 spot. Heller's fellow freshmen Ryan Cheng and Dylan King will also look to continue their recent success at No. 2 doubles in a pivotal match against Brown's Anthony Arocho and Jack Haworth. Haworth, who boasts a team-best 9-1 singles record in 2017, will also pose a threat to Yale's Ziqi Wang at No. 2 singles.
Veteran Bulldogs Stefan Doehler and Alex Hagermoser will also assume a critical role in Sunday's Ivy League season opener, as they are set to face Brown's No. 1 duo Greg Garcia and Lucas Da Silveira, who at 7-0 have yet to lose a match this season. Doehler will also contribute in singles at the No. 4 spot, where he has established a 3-1 overall record; the Yale junior will likely play Brown's Peter Litsky (16-5) this Sunday.
This weekend's match poses a major test for the Elis, who are looking to notch their first win over Ivy League opposition and extend their unbeaten streak at home. Sunday's conference clash will start at 1:00 p.m. at Yale's Cullman-Heyman Tennis Center.
Report by Cameron Ferguson '18, Yale Sports Publicity