18th-Ranked Spartans Open Season with Three Wins on Saturday

18th-Ranked Spartans Open Season with Three Wins on Saturday

The Case Western Reserve University men's tennis team, ranked 18th in Division III, kicked off its 2019 spring season on Saturday afternoon with three victories, defeating Wabash College, Earlham College and the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology each by 9-0 scores in Indiana.

CWRU started off the season on a high note, winning all nine doubles matches and each of the 18 singles matches without dropping a single set.

The Spartans opened their day in Crawfordsville, Indiana with matches against host Wabash and Earlham.  Wabash was up first, with the Spartans sweeping all nine matches on the day.  Third doubles was the first to finish, with the freshmen duo of Aaron Umen and Chaitanya Aduru defeating Nieshaal Thambipillay and Evan Frank 8-0.  Sophomore Matthew Chen and junior Zach Hennessey followed with an 8-3 win over Duncan Roy and Andrew Denning at second doubles, and sophomore Jonathan Powell and Anthony Kanam picked up an 8-5 victory over Patrick McAuley and Jordan Greenwell at first doubles.

Kanam opened singles play with a 6-0, 6-2 win over Denning in the no. 3 match, and the Spartans clinched the team victory with a win by Chen at first singles, 6-2, 6-2 over McAuley.  Umen added a second singles win over Greenwell, 6-2, 6-3, sophomore Earl Hsieh topped Frank at sixth singles, 6-0, 6-0, freshman Max Vicario earned a 6-2, 6-1 win over Roy, and senior Rob Stroup completed the sweep with a fifth-singles win over Thambipillay, 6-0 , 6-1.

Wabash dropped to 0-3 with the loss.

The Spartans turned their attention to Earlham, once again sweeping all three doubles matches and six singles contests.  The third doubles duo of Vicario and Hsieh defeated Aleksandr Sergeev and Jason Lawson 8-2 to start doubles action, followed by an 8-3 from Umen and Aduru at second doubles over Adarsh Singh and Nicola Manni, and an 8-4 win from Kanam and Hennessey at first doubles over Aitor Zerdilas-Herrera and Nikolas Trikkas-Psomas.

Umen claimed his second singles victory of the day in the match, topping Sergeev 6-0, 6-0 in the second match, and junior Henry Squire clinched for the Spartans with a 6-4, 6-1 win at third singles over Trikkas-Psomas.  At fourth singles, Aduru defeated Lawson 6-1, 6-0, and Kanam followed with a 6-3, 7-6 victory over Zerdilas-Herrera at first singles.  Completing the sweep were Hsieh at fifth singles with a 6-0, 6-0 win over Singh and Hennessey at sixth singles with a 6-0, 6-3 victory over Manni.

The setback dropped Earlham to 0-1 on the year.

CWRU also set a group to the Wabash Valley Tennis Club in Terre Haute, Indiana, to face Rose-Hulman.  Claiming doubles victories were the duos of Powell and Chen, 8-3 over Ian Landwehr and Andre Adam in first doubles, Stroup and freshman Varun Thachil, 8-2 over Joseph Conrad and Joshua Giambattista at second doubles, and sophomores Josh Hsia and Aris Jhaveri, 8-3 over Austin Perry and Mark Slaninka at third doubles.

First to finish in singles play was Stroup, who topped Adam in straight sets, 6-1, 6-2.  Hsia followed with the clincher, defeating Giambattista 6-3, 6-3 to secure the victory for the Spartans.  Thatchil added a fourth singles win, 6-2, 6-3 over Conrad, and Jhaveri topped Grant Stamper 6-3, 6-0 in the sixth singles match.  Chen claimed a 7-5, 6-3 win against Landwehr at first singles, and Powell wrapped up the day with a 7-6, 6-3 win over Perry at third singles.

Rose-Hulman fell to 0-1 on the season following the loss to the Spartans.

Case Western Reserve will be back in action on Friday, February 15th, facing 40th-ranked Coe College in Kalamazoo, Michigan at 5:00 p.m.