Men’s tennis: No. 1 Virginia advances to NCAA Quarterfinals

virginia tennisThe No. 1 Virginia men’s tennis team (27-4) advanced to the quarterfinals of the 2016 NCAA Championship with a 4-2 victory over No. 16 Oklahoma State (20-8) on Friday (May 20) at the Michael D. Case Tennis Center in Tulsa, Okla.

Sophomore Collin Altamirano (Sacramento, Calif.) rebounded from dropping his first set in a tiebreaker at No. 2 singles to clinch the match with a 6-7 (4), 6-3, 6-2 victory over Arjun Kadhe.

“We came out and played really well in doubles,” said Virginia head coach Brian Boland. “I thought our energy and execution were great. Credit to Oklahoma State as they hung in there during singles and made it really challenging for us, but in the end we were able to finish the match. We would expect nothing less from a team as strong as Oklahoma State as they have had an incredible year and they are able to compete with anyone in the country. They (Oklahoma State) made it a tough match, and it certainly was a bit challenging for us, but we survived and advanced. We are happy to be moving on to the quarterfinals.”

This is the 12th-straight year the Cavaliers have advanced to the tournament’s quarterfinals, the longest active streak in the nation. Virginia will now face No. 9 Florida (21-6) on Sunday, May 22 at 1 p.m. E.T. Live scoring and video streaming will be available for the match through links posted on VirginiaSports.com.

Virginia clinched the doubles point with dominant performances on No. 1 and No. 2, including fourth-ranked junior Luca Corinteli (Alexandria, Va.) and senior Ryan Shane (Falls Church, Va.) taking out No. 10 Julian Cash/Arjun Kadhe, 6-2, on the top court.

In singles, three of the first sets were decided by tiebreakers with the Cavaliers coming out ahead in two of those and winning four of six overall. Virginia took a 2-0 lead on the Cowboys after a 6-4, 6-3 victory by sophomore Henrik Wiersholm (Kirkland, Wash.) at No. 6 singles. Sophomore Alexander Ritschard (Zurich, Switerland) continued his undefeated singles season with a 7-6 (1), 6-1 victory at No. 4 to give Virginia a 3-0 advantage.

Oklahoma State rallied, with Lukas Finzelberg coming back from losing his first set against junior J.C. Aragone (Yorba Linda, Calif.) at No. 5 to win 3-6, 6-2, 6-2. The Cowboys picked up a win at No. 1 singles to cut the lead to 3-2 with courts No. 2 and 3 still competing. Sophomore Thai-Son Kwiatkowski (Charlotte, N.C.) and Lucas Gerch were deadlocked 5-5 in the third set when Altamirano clinched the victory at No. 2.

Virginia has reached the semifinals in eight of the last nine seasons and has won two titles in the last four years (2013 and 2015).

Virginia and Florida faced one another earlier this season with the Cavaliers winning 5-2 in Gainesville on April 6.

 

#1 Virginia 4, #16 Oklahoma State 2

Doubles

  1. #4 Luca Corinteli/Ryan Shane (Virginia) def. #10 Julian Cash/Arjun Kadhe (Oklahoma State), 6-2
  2. #16 Thai-Son Kwiatkowski/Mac Styslinger (Virginia) def. Lucas Gerch/Jurence Mendoza (Oklahoma State), 6-1
  3. Lukas Finzelberg/Tristan Meraut (Oklahoma State) def. Collin Altamirano/J.C. Aragone (Virginia), 4-3 DNF

Order of Finish: 2, 1

Singles

  1. #56 Julian Cash (Oklahoma State) def. #8 Ryan Shane (Virginia), 6-3, 3-6, 6-2
  2. #33 Collin Altamirano (Virginia) def. Arjun Kadhe (Oklahoma State), 6-7 (4), 6-3, 6-2
  3. #9 Thai-Son Kwiatkowski (Virginia) vs. Lucas Gerch (Oklahoma State), 7-6 (3), 4-6, 5-5 DNF
  4. #78 Alexander Ritschard (Virginia) def. Tristan Meraut (Oklahoma State), 7-6 (1), 6-1
  5. Lukas Finzelberg (Oklahoma State) def. #110 J.C. Aragone (Virginia), 3-6, 6-2, 6-2
  6. Henrik Wiersholm (Virginia) def. Jurence Mendoza (Oklahoma State), 6-4, 6-3

Order of Finish: 6, 4, 5, 1, 2


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