CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – The No. 7 Virginia men’s tennis team (27-5) advanced to the finals of the 2022 NCAA Men’s Tennis Team Championship with a 5-0 victory against No. 6 Tennessee (26-8) on Saturday (May 21) on the indoor courts of the Atkins Tennis Center in Champaign, Ill.
The Cavaliers will take on No. 8 Kentucky (26-7) on Sunday, May 22 at 4 p.m. ET in the championship match.
Virginia had a simultaneous clinch on singles courts two and six to result in the 5-0 final score.
Senior Gianni Ross and sophomore Jeffrey von der Schulenburg got the Cavaliers started with a 6-3 victory on doubles court three. Senior Ryan Goetz and sophomore Iñaki Montes clinched the point with a 6-2 victory on court two.
In singles, the Cavaliers won all six first sets, but other than Ross’s 6-1 victory on court five, all of the scores were close. Sophomore Chris Rodesch, von der Schulenburg and grad student Bar Botzer all won 7-5 while Montes and Goetz both went to tiebreakers in their first sets.
Ross went down a break early in his second set against Angel Diaz but rallied to win it 6-4 and put UVA ahead 2-0. Von der Schulenburg was serving up 6-5, but was broken by Emile Hudd to force a tiebreaker to decide the second set on court three. Von der Schulenburg won the breaker 7-2 to put UVA on the brink.
Three of the final four courts had the Cavaliers in a position to clinch. Montes was serving up 5-3, Goetz was serving up 5-2 and Botzer was returning up 5-2. For the final points, Martim Prata, Botzer’s opponent, served ahead of Montes, with Botzer winning seconds ahead of Montes finishing off No. 10 Johannus Monday on court two, giving UVA the 5-0 final.
Rodesch, who had dropped his second set against No. 3 Adam Walton on court one, had just gone up a break in the third set when play was halted.
FROM HEAD COACH ANDRES PEDROSO
“We’re all grateful to be here, headed to the championship match. Right now, it’s mostly a mentality of gratitude. And tomorrow, it’s an attitude of let’s go out and take it. Let’s go out and get it and believe in ourselves. This is a lot of fun! Guys are enjoying it. We’re having a great time. But we are super grateful to be here.”
“Our message to the team was the same as the whole tournament, just make sure we match people’s energy. We’ve got great composure and we’re playing well. So we have to trust in our games. As long as we do those things, energy composure and maturity, we’re gonna be right there with anybody. That’s what they did today. That’s what they’ve been doing all tournament and hopefully, we can do that one more time tomorrow.”
- Virginia brings a 22-match win streak into Sunday’s championship. Their last loss was against Florida at ITA National Team Indoors in February
- Virginia won the first of its four NCAA titles in 2013, the last time Illinois hosted the championship
- Andres Pedroso was an assistant coach on UVA’s 2013 championship team
- Virginia has advanced to seven of the last 11 finals and will be vying to win its fifth title in that span
- A team from the ACC has won four of the last six championships
- Bar Botzer was a member of Wake Forest’s 2018 NCAA Championship team. He is vying to win a title with two different teams
- This is Kentucky’s first time advancing to the NCAA Championship match
- This will be the second meeting of the year between the two teams as Virginia defeated Kentucky 4-2 in Lexington on March 31
#7 Virginia 5, #6 Tennessee 0
- #3 Adam Walton (UT) vs. #30 Chris Rodesch (VA) 5-7, 6-2, 0-2, unfinished
- #39 Inaki Montes (VA) def. #10 Johannus Monday (UT) 7-6 (7-3), 6-3
- #45 J vd Schulenburg (VA) def. #74 Emile Hudd (UT) 7-5, 7-6 (7-2)
- Shunsuke Mitsui (UT) vs. #96 Ryan Goetz (VA) 6-7 (4-7), 2-5, unfinished
- Gianni Ross (VA) def. Angel Diaz (UT) 6-1, 6-4
- Bar Botzer (VA) def. Martim Prata (UT) 7-5, 6-2
- #13 Adam Walton/Pat Harper (UT) vs. #61 Bar Botzer/Chris Rodesch (VA) 4-4, unfinished
- Ryan Goetz/Inaki Montes (VA) def. #21 Emile Hudd/Shunsuke Mitsui (UT) 6-2
- Gianni Ross/J vd Schulenburg (VA) def. Mark Wallner/Johannus Monday (UT) 6-3
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2); Singles (5,3,6,2)
Court 6 clinched the match. Court 2 finished simultaneously.
Match played indoors due to weather
Highlights from the NCAA Semifinal match against Tennessee