May 24, 2016
TULSA, Okla. – The top-seeded Virginia men’s tennis team (30-4) won its second-straight NCAA Championship with a 4-1 victory over No. 11 Oklahoma (20-11) on Tuesday (May 24) playing indoors at the Michael D. Case Tennis Center in Tulsa, Okla.
Sophomore Henrik Wiersholm (Kirkland, Wash.) clinched the victory by winning a tiebreaker in the second set at No. 6 singles.
“First of all congratulations to Oklahoma on a great season,” said Virginia head coach Brian Boland. “We have so much respect for their team and how hard they competed. You feel for anyone who loses a match like this. I know John Roddick and his team left it all out there on the court. I am really pleased with our overall effort. I couldn’t be happier for this team. These guys hung in there all year long, and we went through some adversity in terms of not winning the ACC tournament as well as losing in the finals in the National Indoors. Our guys were extremely persistent. Again, I was really pleased with how they stuck together throughout the entire year as it was a true team effort. I couldn’t be happier for the players.”
In doubles, junior J.C. Aragone (Yorba Linda, Calif.) and sophomore Collin Altamirano (Sacramento, Calif.) cruised to a 6-1 victory at No. 3 doubles. Junior Thai-Son Kwiatkowski (Charlotte, N.C.) and senior Mac Styslinger (Birmingham, Ala.) played a tight match at No. 2, but were broken when serving 5-5. Oklahoma held serve and tied it up with a 7-5 victory. On court one, senior Ryan Shane (Falls Church, Va.) and junior Luca Corinteli (Alexandria, Va.) held serve to take a 6-5 lead and then broke the Sooners to win 7-5 and secure the doubles point for the Cavaliers.
“Coming out we knew it would be tough,” Shane said. “Oklahoma had won the doubles point the day before and it was big for them. We knew we had to come out with a lot of energy. I don’t know what happened on the other two courts, but I know on our court it came down to a few key points. Going into that match we knew that’s how it was going to be, so, mentally we were prepared for it. We just came out with a lot of energy and never got down on ourselves. I think that was a huge key for us to win. I came out and got broken right off the bat, I made all my serves, they came up with some big points, but just kept plowing through and eventually got the job done.”
In singles, Aragone put the Cavaliers up 2-0 with a 6-3, 6-4 victory over Florin Bragusi on court five. Kwiatkowski, who earned the Outstanding Player of the Tournament honor, trailed 4-1 in the first set, but rallied to give Virginia a 3-0 lead with a 6-4, 6-4 victory over Spencer Papa. The win was also the 100th singles victory in Kwiatkowski’s Cavalier career.
Shane fell 7-6, 6-0 to Andrew Harris to give Oklahoma its point. On court six, after winning his first set 6-2, Wiersholm battled back from down two breaks in his second set to tie it up 5-5, only to go back down a break. Wiersholm again battled back and tied it back up, 6-6, to force a tiebreaker. Wiersholm won the tiebreaker 7-2 to clinch the match. Sophomore Alexander Ritschard (Zurich, Switzerland) was serving to win his match on court four at the time Wiersholm won on six.
For the second-straight day, the Cavaliers endured a weather delay with lightning and rain moving the match indoors with an hour-late start time.
Aragone and Altamirano were named to the All-Tournament Team at No. 3 doubles with Corinteli and Shane also earning honors at No. 1. In singles, Wiersholm, Aragone, Ritschard and Kwitakowski all were named to the All-Tournament team.
Virginia and Oklahoma met last year in the NCAA final with the Cavaliers winning the program’s second NCAA title with a 4-1 victory over the Sooners in Waco, Texas. Virginia won its first championship in 2013 to give the Cavaliers three titles in four years.
The match was taped and will air nationwide on local CBS stations on Saturday, June 18 at 1:30 p.m.
#1 Virginia 4, #11 Oklahoma 1
1. #97 Andrew Harris (OU) def. #8 Ryan Shane (VA) 7-6 (7-3), 6-0
2. #33 Collin Altamirano (VA) vs. #25 Axel Alvarez Llamas (OU) 5-7, 3-4, unfinished
3. #9 Thai-Son Kwiatkowski (VA) def. #82 Spencer Papa (OU) 6-4, 6-4
4. #78 Alexander Ritschard (VA) vs. #61 Alex Ghilea (OU) 6-1, 1-6, 5-2, unfinished
5. #110 J.C. Aragone (VA) def. Florin Bragusi (OU) 6-3, 6-4
6. Henrik Wiersholm (VA) def. Andre Biro (OU) 6-2, 7-6 (7-2)
1. #4 Luca Corinteli/Ryan Shane (VA) def. #24 Axel Alvarez Llamas/Andrew Harris (OU) 7-5
2. Alex Ghilea/Spencer Papa (OU) def. #16 Thai-Son Kwiatkowski/Mac Styslinger (VA) 7-5
3. J.C. Aragone/Collin Altamirano (VA) def. Andre Biro/Austin Siegel (OU) 6-1
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2,1); Singles (5,3,1,6)