Monday, 18 February 2019 16:32

ITA Indoors Championship Recap: Ohio State Overpowers Wake Forest to Win National Title

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Ohio State capped off a tremendous week in Chicago by knocking off defending champion Wake Forest 4-2 to win the program's second Men's National Team Indoor Championship. Ohio State got off to a quick start at No. 2 doubles as the ITA No. 7 ranked team of Kyle Seelig and Alex Kobelt cruised to a 6-1 win. Wake Forest was fairing much better elsewhere with break leads late in the match at both No. 1 and No. 3 however despite winning 6-3 at No. 1 they'd be unable to close the door at No. 3. Ohio State's Hunter Tubert and John McNally fought off a match point to break on the deciding point for 4-5 and then they fought off another match point to hold on the deciding point for 5-5. After a pair of holds, Tubert and McNally would fall behind 3-2* in the tiebreak but would go on to take the next five points to win it 7-3. 

Ohio State came out strong in singles and took four of six opening sets. Buckeye junior JJ Wolf quickly made it 2-0 with a 6-0, 6-3 win at No. 1 and shortly thereafter redshirt junior Alex Kobelt made it 3-0 with a 6-3, 6-3 win at No. 5. Ohio State had set and break leads at both No. 2 and No. 4 plus Hunter Tubert was about to get a split at No. 6 so it looked like it was just a matter of time before the shutout was complete however Wake Forest showed its resiliency and came charging back.

Wake sophomore Bar Botzer put the Deacs on the board with a 6-2, 6-3 win at No. 3 and freshman Siddhant Banthia came back from 3-1 down in the third set to defeat Hunter Tubert 6-2, 2-6, 6-3. Over at No. 2, Petros Chrysochos came back from 3-4* down to force a third set against John McNally and at No. 4 Wake freshman Melios Efstathiou erased a 2-4 second set deficit to take a 5-4 lead against Martin Joyce. If Efstathiou would have been able to force a third set the tension would have been unbelievable but Joyce came back with a hold, a break, and then after falling behind 0/30 he'd take the next four points to close it out 7-5, 7-5. 


Ohio State's recap has a post-match interview with Ty Tucker. 

#2 Ohio State 4, #1 Wake Forest 2
Feb 18, 2019 at Chicago, Illinois (Midtown Athletic Club)
Singles competition
1. #2 JJ Wolf (OSU) def. Bona Gojo (WF) 6-0, 6-3
2. #62 John McNally (OSU) vs. #1 Petros Chrysochos (WF) 6-4, 6-7 (4-7), unfinished
3. #21 Bar Botzer (WF) def. #12 Kyle Seelig (OSU) 6-2, 6-3
4. Martin Joyce (OSU) def. #49 Melios Efstathiou (WF) 7-5, 7-5
5. #86 Alex Kobelt (OSU) def. Yuval Solomon (WF) 6-3, 6-3
6. Siddhant Banthia (WF) def. Hunter Tubert (OSU) 6-2, 2-6, 6-3
Doubles competition
1. Bona Gojo/Alan Gadjiev (WF) def. JJ Wolf/Martin Joyce (OSU) 6-3
2. #7 Kyle Seelig/Alex Kobelt (OSU) def. Petros Chrysochos/Bar Botzer (WF) 6-1
3. Hunter Tubert/John McNally (OSU) def. Siddhant Banthia/Julian Zlobinsky (WF) 7-6 (7-3)
Match Notes:
Wake Forest 12-2; National ranking #1
Ohio State 13-0; National ranking #2
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1,3); Singles (1,5,3,6,4)
ITA Indoor Team National Championship Match


The National Team Indoor All-Tournament Team won't be announced for a few more days though these are my picks at each spot in the lineup. 

No. 1: JJ Wolf (Ohio State) - went 4-0 (w/o dropping a set)
No. 2: Petros Chrysochos (Wake Forest) - went 3-0 
No. 3: Bar Botzer (Wake Forest) - went 4-0 winning 8 of 9 sets
No. 4: Martin Joyce (Ohio State) - went 2-0 while leading in the other two unfinished matches
No. 5: Alex Kobelt (Ohio State) - went 2-0
No. 6: Hunter Tubert (Ohio State) - went 3-1
Also considered;
Bo Boyden (UNC) - went 3-0 (played 2 matches at No. 5 and 1 match at No. 6;
Bertus Kruger (TCU) went 3-0 at No. 4
No. 1: Alan Gadjiev/Borna Gojo (Wake Forest) - went 2-0
No. 2: Alex Kobelt/Kyle Seelig (Ohio State) - went 2-0
No. 3: Hunter Tubert/John McNally (Ohio State) - went 4-0
MVP: JJ Wolf
Read 2075 times Last modified on Monday, 18 February 2019 17:40


  • Comment Link Douglas Tuesday, 19 February 2019 18:26 posted by Douglas

    Bobby as a UGA man I am sure you are concerned with the team this year. What will it take to get back where we belong in the top 10?

  • Comment Link DC Wednesday, 20 February 2019 00:40 posted by DC

    Kobelt leads Ohio State to the indoor title, again? Peter won his doubles and singles match in 2014 in Houston in the finals. Alex won his doubles and singles match this year in Chicago in the finals. Quite the family history. Any other brothers with a similar history?

  • Comment Link Bobby Knight Wednesday, 20 February 2019 09:17 posted by Bobby Knight

    For Georgia to reach the top 10-15 this year they need to have their six best players (Reinberg, Zielinski, Bryde, Duncan, Loeb, Henning) stay healthy for the rest of the year and they need to get back some of the confidence they lost last year and early this year after losing one too many close matches.

    Obviously the best way to get their confidence back is by winning matches and the ones in a week and a half against Tennessee (road) and Texas (home) will probably tell us how the rest of the year is going to go. Win both of those and I think the team has a decent shot at reaching the top 15 this year - lose both and it could be a tough rest of the year. Get a split then the verdict is still out.

    These guys are talented enough to hang with and beat anyone but the belief that they can do it has been missing. Going to be interesting to see how this year plays out.

  • Comment Link Bobby Knight Wednesday, 20 February 2019 09:57 posted by Bobby Knight

    DC, I can't think of any others that played with their times in college not overlapping though there a few that played together.

    The Bryan Brothers back in the day at Stanford and the Shane Brothers (Justin/Ryan) at Virginia are the ones that come to mind. Ryan obviously got the attention for winning the NCAA singles title but Justin destroying Clay Thompson in the NCAA team finals in 2013 was huge - without that point UVA doesn't win the match.

    Stanford had the Burdette sisters (Lindsay/Mallory) that both played pivotal roles in Stanford's 2010 NCAA title.

    There were the Boekers (Matias/Nicolas) that won at Georgia in 2001 though Nicolas only played doubles during the tournament.

    The Sandgrens (Tennys/Davey) are in the near-miss column - in 2010 they were runner-ups at both the NTIs and NCAAs.

  • Comment Link DC Wednesday, 20 February 2019 11:08 posted by DC

    Maybe John and Patrick McEnroe but can’t locate results from the indoor titles to confirm whether they won doubles and singles in the finals those years to be similar. Stanford won indoors in 1978 when John was on the team. Stanford won indoors in 1985 when Patrick was on the team. Same might be possible for the outdoor titles as well. Stanford won outdoors in 1978 when John was on the team. Stanford won outdoors in 1986 and 1988 when Patrick was on the team.

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