No. 50 Yale Suffers 7-0 Defeat to No. 72 UNC Wilmington

Marc Powers. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
Marc Powers. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Bulldogs Unable to Recover after Narrow Defeats in Doubles

WILMINGTON, N.C. – The Yale men's tennis team dropped its first match in four weeks Thursday against No. 72 UNC Wilmington (9-4, 0-0 CAA).  Playing at the home courts of the Seahawks, the ranked doubles teams fielded by UNC Wilmington proved too strong for the Elis, who were then unable to push back in singles and succumbed to the 7-0 defeat.

UNC Wilmington hands No. 50 Yale (10-3, 0-0 Ivy) just its third loss of the season, ending the Bulldogs' month-long six-match winning streak.  Yale was attempting to become the first team this season to defeat the Seahawks on their home turf.  UNC Wilmington has now won eight consecutive matches at home.

The battle for the doubles point was as intense as it gets, with no less than three nationally ranked teams taking to the courts.  At No. 1 doubles, the No. 59 Bulldog duo of senior captain Daniel Hoffman and classmate Marc Powers played the No. 18 tandem of Kosta Blank and Chris Cooprider tough, even holding a match point, before the higher ranked Seahawk pairing took control in the last few games to seal the 9-7 victory.  The Bulldogs' No. 3 team of sophomore Matt Saiontz and freshman Martin Svenning also suffered a close defeat, falling to the UNC Wilmington team of Santtu Leskinnen and Kaue Pereira 8-6.

The Seahawks went on to sweep the singles matches, but not before the Elis offered some resistance.  At No. 2 singles, Powers challenged the No. 33 player in the country, Rafael Aita, in the first set before losing 7-5, 6-1.  Senior John Huang, playing at the No. 1 spot, was involved in the most exciting match of the day against Cooprider.  After Cooprider rolled in the first set, Huang roared back in the second before Cooprider took control again to close out the third set and the match, 6-1, 4-6, 6-3.

Yale will now have two days to rest before concluding its spring break trip to the Tar Heel State with a match against No. 55 Old Dominion (10-4, 0-0 CAA) on Sunday at 10:00 a.m. at the UNC Wilmington courts.  The Monarchs, interestingly, find themselves in the same situation as the Bulldogs, as they just had their six-match winning streak snapped on Monday against No. 59 Virginia Tech.

Report by Robert Batista '15, Yale Sports Publicity

 Position  UNC Wilmington  Yale University  Winner  Score
 #1 Singles  Chris Cooprider  John Huang  UNC Wilmington  6-1, 4-6, 6-3
 #2 Singles  #33 Rafael Aita  Marc Powers  UNC Wilmington  7-5, 6-1
 #3 Singles  Sam Williams  Daniel Hoffman  UNC Wilmington  6-1, 6-4
 #4 Singles  Kosta Blank  Martin Svenning  UNC Wilmington  6-1, 6-2
 #5 Singles  Kaue Pereira  Zach Krumholz  UNC Wilmington  6-1,6-3
 #6 Singles  Zach Hublitz  Zach Dean  UNC Wilmington  6-4, 6-2
 #1 Doubles  #18Chris Cooprider
 Kosta Blank
 #59 Daniel Hoffman
 Marc Powers
 UNC Wilmington  9-7
 #2 Doubles  #41Sam Williams
 Rafael Aita
 John Huang
 Patrick Chase
 Unfinished  7-4,15-40 UNCW
 #3 Doubles  Santtu Leskinnen
 Kaue Pereira
 Martin Svenning
 Matt Saiontz
 UNC Wilmington  8-6