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Tennis teams finish off historic seasons at UAAs

By Shea Decker-Jacoby

Section: Sports

April 28, 2017

The men’s and women’s tennis teams traveled to Alamonte Springs, FL, for the UAA Conference Tournament at the close of the April break.

It was the women’s team’s last matches of the season, and the Judges finished sixth with an 8-1 win against NYU and a 4-5 loss to Case Western Reserve University. They will finish with a 15-5 season and ranked 19th in the country, tying with the 1980-81 squad for most dual-match wins in a single season.

After falling to third seed Washington University in St. Louis in the first round, the Brandeis women faced New York University for an opportunity to advance to the final round of the backdraw and play Case Western for the fifth-place position.

The women took two out of the three doubles matches against the NYU team to go up 2-1 going into singles before handily sweeping the singles match to bring home the 7-2 victory. Brandeis had notable singles wins from Haley Cohen ’18 at the two singles spot, winning her match 6-0, 6-1, as well as a strong showing from Olivia Leavitt ’19, who defeated her opponent 6-1, 6-1 at four singles. Keren Khromchenko ’19 won her match 6-4, 6-3 to win the third seat. Leavitt crushed her opponent 6-1, 6-1.

The Judges then faced Case Western, but could not pull through in the end and took a 4-5 loss. Each Brandeis doubles team had opportunities to pull ahead in their individual matches, but ultimately Khromchenko and Michele Lehat ’19 took the only doubles win at three doubles with an 8-6 win.

The Judges bounced back in the single matches to split wins 3-3 to the fifth-seeded team. Sabrina Ross Neergaard ’20 won a close match 7-6, 5-7, 6-4 at number-one singles. Leavitt also brought home a victory, beating her opponent 6-1, 6-2. Lehat brought home the last win blowing out her opponent 6-0, 6-0. No other Judges could secure wins to trump the higher ranked Case Western.

The men’s tennis team put up an even stronger performance in Florida, securing the fifth-place spot though seeded seventh in the UAA tournament. After a 3-6 loss to Washington University in the first round, the team was set to face off against NYU once again. The men’s team previously dropped their regular season match to NYU 2-7 to NYU.

The Judges came out strong and swept doubles in an extravagant fashion, winning 8-3 at the one spot, 8-2 at the two spot and 8-4 at the three spot.

In the singles play, senior captain Brian Granoff ’17 defeated his NYU competitor in a quick 6-0, 6-2 victory, remaining steady and consistent throughout the match. Michael Arguello ’17 also took a win with a closer 7-6, 6-1 win at number-three singles. Tyler Ng ’19 defeated his opponent 6-4, 6-4 taking the fourth seat in the tournament, and Mitchell Ostrovsky ’20 finished off the Brandeis victory at the number-five singles spot with the takedown of his competitor in a 6-2, 6-4 victory.

In the final round of the tournament, the Judges faced off against 12th-ranked Case Western. The two teams battled for the fifth-place spot. Building on their momentum from the NYU match, the men’s team took a quick lead to shock the highly ranked opponent in a doubles sweep.

Up 3-0 after doubles, Granoff and Ng secured the match win, defeating their opponents at the number-two spot and number-four spot, respectively. The final score settled at 5-4 in favor of the Judges. After the upset wins against NYU and Case Western at the UAA tournament, the number-34 ranked Brandeis men’s tennis team jumped 12 spots in the ranking to number 22 in the nation, a solid and successful way for the team’s four seniors to go out.

Notable achievements from the Brandeis men’s tennis seniors include more than 100 career match wins from both senior captains Arguello and Granoff. Arguello and Ryan Bunis ’17 went undefeated in doubles in the UAA tournament, and Granoff went undefeated at the number-two singles spot in the UAA tournament.

The Judges have a chance to surpass the winning record set by the 2006-2007 squad as Head Coach Ben Lamanna’s most wins in a season on when they take on 20th ranked Tufts University on Friday, April 28. This match is the team’s final match of the season and Senior Day for Arguello, Bunis, Jeff Cherkin ’17 and Granoff. The match will most likely be hosted on the indoor courts in Gosman Athletic Center at 3 p.m.

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