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What a night of tennis it was in Winston-Salem as top-ranked Wake Forest fought through the wind and a tough as nails opponent to defeat previously undefeated No. 3 Virginia 5-2. The match was originally scheduled to start at 4 p.m. ET but due to a late shower the start was delayed two and a half hours until 6:30 p.m. Once play began both teams had to fight through windy conditions and as the sun dropped so did the temperature. 

Virginia got off to a quick start at No. 3 doubles with JC Aragone and Collin Altamirano holding on a no-ad point and then breaking on a no-ad point to go up 2-0. Wake’s Petros Chrysochos and Dennis Uspensky would break back back on a no-ad point and then hold on another no-ad point for 2-2. After an exchange of holds, Wake would break the Aragone serve at love to go up 4-3. Chrysochos would hold from 40/30 to make it 5-3 and then Wake broke the Altamirano serve from 30/40 to win it 6-3. 

Virginia also went up an early break at No. 2 doubles when Thai-Son Kwiatkowski and Alexander Ritschard broke the Alan Gadjiev serve from 30/40 to put Virginia in front 3-2. Gadjiev and Borna Gojo would put it back on serve at 4-4 when they broke the Ritschard serve from 30/40 on a point that ended with Gadjiev putting a volley away right on top of the net. Virginia claimed that Gadjiev’s racquet came over the net on the final volley but the chair disagreed and the break stood. If you watch the clip just as the point ends Wake also breaks on 3 so that 25 seconds was a big sequence for the Deacs. After Gadjiev held from 40-15 for 5-4, Kwiatkowski fought off a match point on the no-ad point when the chair overruled Wake’s out call on the serve. The match would end up going unfinished with Wake leading 6-5. 

Wake ended up clinching the doubles point at No. 1 when the ITA No. 1 ranked team of Skander Mansouri and Christian Seraphim defeated Luca Corinteli and Henrik Wiersholm in a tiebreak. Both teams had break opportunities early on though neither was able to convert. Virginia went up 15/40 on Seraphim’s 0-1 service game but Seraphim came to hold. Wake went up 0/40 on Corinteli’s 1-1 service game but Corinteli came back to hold as well. After 12 consecutive holds the match went to a tiebreak and Mansouri and Seraphim would take it 7-4 to give Wake the early 1-0 lead.  Below are some video clips I shot during warmups and the doubles point – everything is in order from start to finish. 

 

 

Originally Virginia had Carl Soderlund slotted at No. 2 singles but after the doubles point head coach Brian Boland decided to remove him which shifted the rest of the guys up one spot. Soderlund has been sidelined for over a month with a foot injury and Boland decided against bringing him back in an attempt to get him as close to 100% as possible (see his comments below the box score). 

Wake Forest rode the momentum from the doubles point and went up early breaks at 1, 2, 3, and 4 but Virginia would turn two of those back in its favor and would end up taking four opening sets. Virginia senior Luca Corinteli tied the match at 1-1 with a dominating straight set win over Alan Gadjiev at No. 6. Corinteli went up 5-1 in the opening set, after winning a bunch of no-ad points, and then despite dropping two straight he’d break back to take the opening set 6-3. There were some close games in the second set but Corinteli won them all and then he closed out the match by tracking down a drop shot to win it 6-3, 6-0.  

Wake Forest junior Skander Mansouri put the Deacs back in front with a straight set win over Collin Altamirano at No. 3. Mansouri broke Altamirano at love to go up 2-1 in the first and then he hit an ace on the no-ad point to hold for 3-1. Altamirano’s best chance to get it back on serve came when Mansouri served at 4-3 (15/40). Mansouri managed to come back and hold with an ace on the no-ad point and then two games later he’d serve out the set from 40/30 to take it 6-4. Altamirano went up a break early in the second set but Mansouri broke back and ended up closing it out with a love hold to win 6-4, 6-3. 

Roughly five minutes later Virginia junior Henrik Wiersholm tied the match at 2-2 with a straight set win over Christian Seraphim at No. 5. There were no breaks in the first set but Wiersholm went up a mini-break in the tiebreak and took it 7-5. In the second set Wiersholm broke for 4-3 and then he broke again from 30/40 to close out the 7-6, 6-3 win. 

It wouldn’t stay tied for long because Wake Forest sophomore Petros Chrysochos would pull out a three-set win over Thai-Son Kwiatkowski at No. 1. Chrysochos cruised the first set taking it 6-1 but Kwiatkowski was in control of the second and took it 6-2. The third set stayed on serve until Chrysochos broke Kwiatkowski from 15/40 to go up 5-3 and then he’d come back from 15/40 down to close it out 6-1, 2-6, 6-3.

The remaining 200+ fans, out of the original 1000, made their way over to the other bank of courts where the final two matches were early in the third set. Virginia junior Alexander Ritschard came back from a break down to take the opening set at No. 2 by a 7-5 score but Wake Forest freshman Borna Gojo claimed the second set 6-3. Gojo started pulling away in the third set with breaks for 3-1 and 5-1 and then he’d serve it out at love to start the mob scene. 

 

 

They did play the final match out to a conclusion and despite falling behind 5-2 in the third Wake Forest sophomore Dennis Uspensky would come back to defeat JC Aragone 4-6, 6-2, 7-6(5) to make the final score 5-2. Below are the video clips that I shot during the singles portion of the match – most were game points or break points. 

 

 

#1 Wake Forest 5, #3 Virginia 2
Mar 31, 2017 at Winston-Salem, N.C. (Wake Forest Tennis Complex)
Singles competition
1. #2 Petros Chrysochos (WF) def. #6 Thai-Son Kwiatkowski (VA) 6-1, 2-6, 6-3
2. #57 Borna Gojo (WF) def. Alexander Ritschard (VA) 5-7, 6-3, 6-1
3. #14 Skander Mansouri (WF) def. #64 Collin Altamirano (VA) 6-4, 6-4
4. Dennis Uspensky (WF) def. #104 J.C. Aragone (VA) 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 (7-5)
5. Henrik Wiersholm (VA) def. Christian Seraphim (WF) 7-6 (7-5), 6-3
6. Luca Corinteli (VA) def. Alan Gadjiev (WF) 6-3, 6-0
Doubles competition
1. #1 Skander Mansouri/Christian Seraphim (WF) def. #49 Luca Corinteli/Henrik Wiersholm (VA) 7-6 (7-4)
2. Borna Gojo/Alan Gadjiev (WF) vs. Thai-Son Kwiatkowski/Alexander Ritschard (VA) 6-5, unfinished
3. Petros Chrysochos/Dennis Uspensky (WF) def. J.C. Aragone/Collin Altamirano (VA) 6-3
Match Notes
Virginia 17-1 (4-1 ACC); National ranking #3
Wake Forest 18-1 (6-0 ACC); National ranking #1
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1); Singles (6,3,5,1,2,4)
ITA Poll – Wake Forest 1, Virginia 3
USTA Poll – Virginia 1, Wake Forest 2
A-1106

Post-Match Wake Forest Quotes from the Winston-Salem Journal

“It was nice,” said Gojo, who has won 10 straight matches. “I’ve been in a couple of those situations already this year and I came through, so I believed that I was going to do it, having all these guys next to me cheering me on. It just helps me, and I’m pretty confident that I’m going to do it every time that I play.”

On clinching: “It’s the best feeling in the world,” Gojo said. “I was playing in some pro tournaments before, and like you win a match but you just never get this feeling for your team, for your college, and it’s amazing.”

“Borna’s been Borna all year,” head coach Tony Bresky said. “I’m biased, but I think he’s the best freshman in the country. He just knows how to win. It’s amazing watching him. He’s a great competitor.”

“It was a really great to get all these people (crowd) out,” Gojo said. “It’s a great atmosphere to play (a) night session match. It’s not usual, but in front of all these fans, it was really, really great.”

Post-Match Quotes from Virginia’s recap
“I am really pleased with where we are at in this point of the season and I believe the team is in a great place,” said Virginia head coach Brian Boland. “I give credit to Wake Forest for playing an outstanding match. [Freshman] Carl Söderlund is still day-to-day and I chose not to play him today. I just wanted to give him a little more time to get 100 percent healthy. We need to make sure he is as healthy as he needs to be to really help us long term. We have had a lot of adversity, but that is fine for this point of the season. We are in a good place and look forward to playing Clemson on Sunday.” 
 

 
#16 TCU 4, #8 Oklahoma State 0
Mar 31, 2017 at Stillwater, Oklahoma (Greenwood Tennis Center)
Singles competition
1. #3 Cameron Norrie (TCU) def. #23 Julian Cash (OSU) 6-4, 6-2
2. #27 Alex Rybakov (TCU) def. #77 Arjun Kadhe (OSU) 6-1, 6-4
3. #78 Guillermo Nuñez (TCU) def. Lucas Gerch (OSU) 6-2, 6-2
4. Artur Dubinski (OSU) vs. #81 Jerry Lopez (TCU) 6-3, 3-3, unfinished
5. #69 Lukas Finzelberg (OSU) vs. Reese Stalder (TCU) 1-6, 6-6, unfinished
6. Tristan Meraut (OSU) vs. Trey Daniel (TCU) 6-2, 4-3, unfinished
Doubles competition
1. #2 Julian Cash/Arjun Kadhe (OSU) def. #38 Reese Stalder/Jerry Lopez (TCU) 6-2
2. #21 Guillermo Nuñez/Alex Rybakov (TCU) def. #76 Lucas Gerch/Jurence Mendoza (OSU) 6-4
3. Cameron Norrie/Trevor Johnson (TCU) def. Artur Dubinski/Lukas Finzelberg (OSU) 6-1
Match Notes:
TCU 12-4, 1-0; National ranking #16
Oklahoma State 17-4, 0-1; National ranking #8
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (1,3,2)
T-1:53 A-243
 

 

Head Coach David Roditi via TCU’s recap
“Our boys came to play today. I am very pleased with our performance. Any time you beat a team like Oklahoma State on the road like that means a lot of positive things happened. Our conference is so tough so this is a huge win and a great way to start our conference season. We know each other well and it is always a good battle. The highlight today was to see Trevor Johnson back on the court and playing really good doubles. He’s been through a lot and he deserves to smile and to enjoy playing tennis. Obviously our three lefties played extremely well and Guillermo (Nuñez) bounced back nicely after Texas A&M. I thought Reese (Stalder) was playing extremely well and about to possibly beat a player who beat him last time. We have one day to practice indoors since we may have to play indoors at Oklahoma on Sunday.”

Post-Match Quotes from OSU’s recap
“Obviously it wasn’t the result we were hoping to get today,” head coach Jay Udwadia said. “I thought our energy could’ve been a little better in doubles, but a lot of the credit has to go to TCU for the way that they played.”

“Cash has had a fantastic season to this point and he knows he can play, so I know that I don’t have to worry about him,” Udwadia said. “He’s got a great head on his shoulders and he’ll be ready to go again on Sunday against Texas.”

“The Big 12 is one of the best conferences in the country,” Udwadia said. “You’ve got to be ready to go from the start and if you’re even a little bit off your game it can get away from you. I think TCU is a top-10 team in the nation, especially as they get all of their guys back into their lineup and every team in the Big 12 is just like that.”

 

 

Highlight Video

  

#6 Texas 4, #13 Oklahoma 3
Mar 31, 2017 at Norman, Oklahoma (Headington Family Tennis Center)
Doubles – Order of Finish: 3, 1
1 George Goldhoff/Leonardo Telles (UT) def. Spencer Papa/Jochen Bertsch (OU), 6-3
2 Yuya Ito/Harrison Scott (UT) vs. Alex Ghilea/Florin Bragusi (OU), 4-4, susp.
3 Christian Sigsgaard/Julian Zlobinsky (UT) def. Mason Bridegan/Adrian Oetzbach (OU), 6-2
Singles – Order of Finish: 1, 6, 3, 5, 2, 4
1 No. 28 Spencer Papa (OU) def. No. 16 Christian Sigsgaard (UT), 6-1, 6-1
2 No. 49 Alex Ghilea (OU) def. No. 46 Harrison Scott (UT), 7-6, 6-4
3 No. 97 Florin Bragusi (OU) def. No. 29 Yuya Ito (UT), 6-4, 7-5
4 George Goldhoff (UT) def. Jochen Bertsch (OU), 6-2, 6-7, 6-1
5 No. 112 Leonardo Telles (UT) def. Adrian Oetzbach (OU), 6-3, 6-4
6 Rodrigo Banzer (UT) def. Arnaud Restifo (OU), 6-4, 6-2
 

Post-Match Quotes/Info From Texas’s recap
“We got down in the doubles, but the guys did a great job of coming back,” said UT head coach Michael Center. “It was a huge point for us tonight. I knew those guys at one, two and three are experienced, and we’ve struggled with them. We knew we would have to work hard to get a point there. We came up short at those spots, but the guys got the job done at Nos. 4, 5 and 6 tonight. We’ll take the win and get ready for Oklahoma State on Sunday.”

Friday’s win marked the 500th career victory for Center in his 25-plus seasons as a head coach. Center holds a 500-193 (.722) overall record in coaching stops at Kansas (men and women), TCU and Texas. He holds a 342-125 (.732) mark in his 16-plus seasons with the Longhorns.

“It feels good to know I’ve had that many good players and teams and to do it for this long,” Center said. “It’s nice to win it here because I remember some tough losses here. That makes it even more special, but more importantly, we need to get ready for Sunday.”

Post-Match Quotes from OU’s recap
“I think it just showed their leadership,” head coach Nick Crowell said. “They didn’t drop a set at one, two or three, that’s an unbelievable effort. Those guys were so strong mentally – nothing got to them. They came ready to play tonight and I’m super proud of those guys.

“Our guys fought extremely hard,” Crowell said. “I was really proud of our effort level. We made improvements from our spring break trip over the last 12 days but just came up short tonight. Texas is a good team, and with that last match, Goldhoff is a senior, he played No. 1 last year and that was a big challenge.

Crowell added, “J.B. (Bertsch) did an unbelievable job of fighting back from down match point in the second set and he gave us an opportunity to win the match. We have to come back tomorrow, work hard, get a little better and we’re hungry for an opportunity against TCU.

 

 

#33 Minnesota 4, #28 Illinois 3
Mar 31, 2017 at Minneapolis, Minn. (Baseline Tennis Center)
Singles competition
1. #20 Aleks Vukic (ILL) def. #80 Matic Spec (MINN) 6-4, 6-2
2. Felix Corwin (MINN) def. Gui Gomes (ILL) 3-6, 6-2, 7-6 (7-2)
3. Aleks Kovacevic (ILL) def. Stefan Milicevic (MINN) 6-4, 4-6, 6-3
4. Eli Ogilvy (MINN) def. Zeke Clark (ILL) 6-2, 3-6, 6-3
5. Josip Krstanovic (MINN) def. Julian Childers (ILL) 2-6, 7-6 (7-3), 6-1
6. Marino Alpeza (MINN) def. Vuk Budic (ILL) 2-6, 7-6 (7-3), 6-2
Doubles competition
1. Felix Corwin/Matic Spec (MINN) def. Alex Jesse/Aleks Kovacevic (ILL) 7-5
2. Aleks Vukic/Vuk Budic (ILL) def. Justyn Levin/Eli Ogilvy (MINN) 6-4
3. Zeke Clark/Gui Gomes (ILL) def. Marino Alpeza/Josip Krstanovic (MINN) 7-6 (7-2)
Match Notes
Illinois 9-9 (2-2); National ranking #28
Minnesota 14-4 (3-1); National ranking #33
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1,3); Singles (1,5,4,2,3,6)

 

 

#30 Wisconsin 4, #19 Northwestern 2
Mar 31, 2017 at Nielsen Tennis Stadium (Madison, Wis)
Singles competition
1. #41 Strong Kirchheimer (NU) def. Lamar Remy (WIS) 6-4, 6-4
2. Josef Dodridge (WIS) def. #53 Konrad Zieba (NU) 6-2, 6-2
3. Dominik Stary (NU) def. Osgar O’Hoisin (WIS) 6-4, 6-2
4. Chema Carranza (WIS) def. Ben Vandixhorn (NU) 6-3, 6-4
5. Chase Colton (WIS) vs. Jason Seidman (NU) 6-7, 2-2, unfinished
6. Daniel Soyfer (WIS) def. Michael Lorenzini (NU) 6-2, 7-6
Doubles competition
1. Chema Carranza/Josef Dodridge (WIS) vs. Strong Kirchheimer/Dominik Stary (NU) 5-4, unfinished
2. Lamar Remy/Chase Colton (WIS) def. Ben Vandixhorn/Konrad Zieba (NU) 6-4
3. Osgar O’Hoisin/John Zordani (WIS) def. Michael Lorenzini/Chris Ephron (NU) 6-4
Match Notes:
Northwestern 14-7, 2-2; National ranking #19
Wisconsin 13-2, 4-0; National ranking #30
Order of finish: Doubles (2,3); Singles (3,4,6,2,1)
T-2:16

Post-Match Quotes from Wisconsin’s recap
“This is a huge win,” head coach Danny Westerman said excitedly. “Our guys are playing at a level where they expect to win these matches. It feels amazing but this is our expectation – to compete with the top teams in the conference and the top teams in the nation. This is validation for the work these players are putting in. We don’t want to be outworked as players and we don’t want to be outworked as coaches.”

“Doubles were tremendous and every player had a role. It was total team performance. To point out someone individually is a disservice. All these guys deserve credit for this win. Great match, I’m proud of all these guys.”

“We love these guys, we love this program,” Westerman continued. “Other sports on campus are getting it done, there’s no reason we can’t either.

 

Other Friday Scores By Conference:

 

ACC:

  • Duke def. #27 Florida State 5-2 – Robert Levine played for the first time in over a month (mono) and both Catalin Mateas and TJ Pura returned as well.
  • #11 North Carolina def. Miami FL 6-1 
  • #15 Georgia Tech won on the road at Boston College 5-2 
  • NC State won on the road at #43 Notre Dame 4-3 – Ivan Saveljic won the decider 6-4 in the third
  • Virginia Tech def. Clemson 6-1

SEC

  • #7 Texas A&M def. #31 Ole Miss 6-1 – five sets finished in tiebreak with A&M winning three of them
  • #46 Arkansas won on the road at LSU 4-3 – Johan den Toom clinched at No. 5 to put Arkansas up 4-2

Pac-12

  • #5 USC def. #23 Oregon 5-0 – four of six singles matches went three sets
  • #9 Cal def. Utah 4-0 – Florian Lakat didn’t play for Cal but the Bears won all but one set in singles
  • #10 UCLA def. #32 Washington 4-0 – UCLA with three straight sets wins while UW led the other matches that went unfinished 
  • #22 Stanford def. Arizona 4-0 – Cardinal won all completed set in singles

Big Ten

  • #3 Ohio State won on the road at Iowa 7-0 – Buckeyes won all but one set in singles
  • #18 Michigan won on the road at #44 Indiana 7-0 – Wolverines won three matches in straight and three in three-sets; Indiana is still w/o its No. 1 Raheel Manji (injury)
  • Penn State won on the road at Nebraska 5-2 – PSU led 5-0 and Nebraska won the final two matches
  • Iowa def. DePaul 7-0

Big 12

  • #41 Texas Tech won on the road at Tulsa 4-0 – Red Raiders took doubles and got three straight set wins in singles; Tulsa led in two other matches with the last one going three sets