Chen & Hopper First in Final ITA Division III National Doubles Rankings

Matthew Chen (left) hits a forehand shot, while James Hopper (right) hits a backhand

The final Oracle/ Intercollegiate Tennis Association Division III Men's National and Regional Rankings were released on Friday, with a number of Case Western Reserve University players featured prominently, led by the duo of junior Matthew Chen and first-year James Hopper, who ended the campaign as the top-ranked doubles pairing in Division III.

Chen and Hopper, who ended the season with a 24-2 record together (including an 11-1 mark in the spring season), claimed the ITA Cup Division III National Doubles Championship in the fall, becoming the first duo in program history to claim the title. When doubles matches with other partners are included, each totaled 31 doubles wins during the campaign, just two away from the program's single-season record, despite nearly half the season being cancelled due to the pandemic.

Hopper also finished the year ranked seventh nationally and second in the region in singles. He went 21-4 during the year, and won the ITA Fall Regional Championship, before claiming a fifth-place finish in the Division III draw at the ITA Cup.

Two other Spartans ended the year both nationally and regionally ranked for their singles play. Chen, who went 16-8 in singles matches during the year, was ranked 41st in the nation and 10th regionally, while sophomore Aaron Umen, 22-3 in 2019-20, was ranked 50th nationally and 13th in the region. In addition, the Spartans' doubles pairing of junior Neil Mabee and senior Anthony Kanam, who registered a perfect 10-0 record together, was ranked 12th in the final Central Region Rankings.

Case Western Reserve completed the 2020 spring season with an 18-1 record in dual matches, and was ninth in the last Division III team rankings, released on March 13.