CHICAGO – The Virginia men’s tennis team (8-2) fell 4-2 to top-seeded Ohio State (11-0) in the quarterfinals of the 2019 Oracle ITA National Men’s Team Indoor Championship on Saturday (Feb. 16) at the Midtown Athletic Club in Chicago, Ill.
Ohio State won the doubles point and picked up victories on singles courts one, four and six to eliminate the Cavaliers from championship contention.
Virginia will play a consolation match on Sunday, Feb. 17 at 4:30 p.m. ET against an opponent yet to be determined. Live scoring and live video will be available through links posted on VirginiaSports.com.
In doubles, senior Henrik Wiersholm (Kirkland, Wash.) and freshman Brandon Nakashima (San Diego, Calif.) started the match with a dominant 6-1 victory at No. 2 doubles. The Buckeyes evened the score by picking up a win on court three. On court one, junior Carl Söderlund (Stockholm, Sweden) and freshman William Woodall (Washington, D.C.) were broken at 4-4 to fall behind 5-4. The duo had a chance to break back, facing a deuce match-point, but JJ Wolf and Martin Joyce won the point and earned a 6-4 victory to give Ohio State the 1-0 victory.
In singles, Martin Joyce and Hunter Tubert picked up straight-set victories over sophomore Gianni Ross (Chicago, Ill.) and senior Aswin Lizen (Douglas, Isle of Man) to put the Buckeyes up 3-0, but the Cavaliers continued to battle. Nakashima had won his first set, 6-4, over No. 12 Kyle Seelig on court three and was on-serve but leading 40-30 to possibly go up a break on court three when play was abandoned. Freshman Ryan Goetz (Greenlawn, N.Y.) had won his first set in a tiebreaker, 7-4, and was on-serve in his second set. Wiersholm had been edged in a tiebreaker to decide his first set, 7-3, but was leading 4-1 in the second set. Söderlund was edged 6-4 by No. 2 JJ Wolf in his first set on court one, but had been going game-for-game with Wolf in the second set until Söderlund was serving down 4-5 and Wolf broke him at 30-40 to clinch the match and the victory for the Buckeyes.
The ITA Division I National Men’s Team Indoor Championship is in its 44th year of existence. Fifteen teams qualified for the event by winning their respective 2019 ITA Kick-Off Weekend four-team regional, while Illinois received an automatic bid for being the host site. The teams will compete in a single-elimination tournament over a four-day span to crown a national indoor champion. Each team is guaranteed three matches at the event.