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Columbia Edges Yale in Season Finale

Columbia Edges Yale in Season Finale

King, Lu Notch Singles Wins in 5-2 Away Loss to No. 23 Columbia

NEW YORK, N.Y. – Following a resilient performance against No. 26 Cornell on Saturday, the Yale men's tennis team faced off against Columbia away from home on Sunday.  Given Columbia's position as joint league leaders and highest-ranked team in the conference, the Bulldogs entered the match as considerable underdogs; and although the Elis forced close matches across the board, they ultimately fell 5-2 as the Lions earned their fourth consecutive Ivy League title. As has been a recurring theme this season, Yale's Dylan King and Tyler Lu emerged as star players on the day, with both players notching singles victories against tough opponents.

Sunday's clash began with doubles play, and the Lions immediately jumped out to a strong start. Columbia's No. 1 team of Richard and Victor Pham quickly drew first blood with a 6-2 win over Yale's Fedor Andrienko and Alex Hagermoser. Although the remaining two matches went down to the wire, Columbia's No. 3 duo Christopher Grant and Michael Rolski managed to clinch the doubles point for the home side with a 6-4 victory over Yale's Lu and Photos Photiades. As a result, doubles play was suspended at the No. 2 spot, where Yale freshmen Ryan Cheng and King were trailing 4-5.

Columbia soon built on its impressive doubles performance with quality singles play. At No. 6 singles, the Lions' Timothy Wang downed Cheng 6-4, 6-2; Yale's Andrew Heller also fell by a similar margin to Columbia's Adam Ambrozy at the No. 5 spot. Columbia's highest-ranked player Victor Pham then earned the Lions' fourth and decisive point at No. 2 singles, where he edged Yale's Ziqi Wang 6-4, 6-4.

Although the result of the match had already been decided in Columbia's favor, Yale's remaining players refused to roll over in their matches. At No. 3 singles, freshman Dylan King capped off a remarkable rookie season with a 7-5, 6-4 win over Columbia's Jackie Tang, improving his singles record this spring to 19-3. King's freshman season has been a historic success, with the Bulldog securing 32 total wins (to just four losses), the most of any Yale player in over three decades. Yale's Tyler Lu also completed a historic season of his own on Sunday, edging Columbia's No. 1 player Shawn Hadavi (ranked No. 82 nationally) in three sets to finish the Ivy League season with an undefeated 7-0 singles record. A likely candidate to be nominated Yale's first conference Player of the Year since Marc Powers in 2010, Lu finishes the 2016-17 season with a 26-6 overall record and a national ranking in the top 65.

Although the Bulldogs will be disappointed to end the season with a 5-2 loss, the intensely competitive nature of Sunday's match against the league champions will benefit the team's younger players going forward. As for the starting seniors Hagermoser, Lu and Photiades, Sunday's match allows them to conclude the Ivy League season with their heads held high; their invaluable contributions to the team will surely be missed in the seasons to come.

Report by Cameron Ferguson '18, Yale Sports Publicity

 
FULL MATCH RESULTS – Columbia 5, Yale 2

Position

 Yale University

 Columbia University

 Winner

 Score

 #1 Singles

 #63 Tyler Lu

 #82 Shawn Hadavi

 Yale University

 7-6,1-6,1-0(5)

 #2 Singles

 Ziqi Wang

 #71 Victor Pham

 Columbia University

 6-4,6-4

 #3 Singles

 Dylan King

 Jackie Tang

 Yale University

 7-5,6-4

 #4 Singles

 Stefan Doehler

 Alex Keyser

 Columbia University

 6-0,7-6

 #5 Singles

 Andrew Heller

 Adam Ambrozy

 Columbia University

 6-2,6-4

 #6 Singles

 Ryan Cheng

 Timothy Wang

 Columbia University

 6-4,6-2

 #1 Doubles

 Alex Hagermoser 
 Fedor Andrienko

 #57 Richard Pham 
 Victor Pham

 Columbia University

 6-2

 #2 Doubles

 Ryan Cheng 
 Dylan King

 Shawn Hadavi 
 Jackie Tang

 Unfinished

 

 #3 Doubles

 Tyler Lu 
 Photos Photiades

 Michal Rolski 
 Christopher Grant

 Columbia University

 6-4