No. 54 Yale Drops Ivy Opener to No. 51 Princeton, 5-2

Martin Svenning. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
Martin Svenning. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Powers and Svenning Pick up Wins

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – In its first match of the Ivy League stretch, the Yale men's tennis team came up short against a streaking Princeton team despite showing a resilient fighting spirit.  Playing on Saturday at Yale's home courts, No. 51 Princeton (13-4, 2-0 Ivy) held off a Bulldog fight-back in singles to record a 5-2 victory.   

The loss gives No. 54 Yale (14-4, 0-1 Ivy) its first loss at home this season, ending an eight-match undefeated run on home turf.  Princeton's win also breaks Yale's overall four-match winning streak. 

The Tigers quickly set the tone of the match with wins at No's. 1 and 3 doubles.  The match at No.1 doubles saw Yale's senior duo of captain Daniel Hoffman and Marc Powers challenge the nation's No. 33 team of Zack McCourt and Matija Pecotic.  Hoffman and Powers were unable to pull off the upset, however, falling in an 8-4 decision.

The Elis looked primed to pull off yet another comeback victory in singles, as Powers broke down McCourt's game at No. 2 singles to post a 6-2, 6-3 win and even the contest.  The next match to finish was at No. 1 singles, which saw a rematch between senior John Huang and Pecotic, the No. 7 college player in the nation.  After Pecotic eased through the first set, Huang mounted stiff resistance in the second set before succumbing to a 6-1, 6-4 loss.  Pecotic's win allowed Princeton to regain the lead in the overall score. 

At No. 6 singles, Princeton's Jonathan Carcione fended off a spirited comeback by senior Zachary Dean  to record a 6-2, 6-4 and extend the lead for the Tigers.  With all three remaining matches locked in the heat of battle, it looked as if the match would come down to a trio of three-set encounters, all three of which Yale would have had to win.  Princeton's Dan Richardson had other plans, though, as he narrowly edged out freshman Jason Brown in two extremely close sets to clinch the Tigers' second win of the Ivy League season.

Despite the team's loss, freshman Martin Svenning made a magnificent Ivy League debut with a 7-5, 7-5 triumph over one of Princeton's experienced seniors, Matt Siow.  Hoffman, meanwhile, suffered his first Ivy loss since the 2010-11 season, having gone a perfect 7-0 in Ivy League play last season, in addition to gaining wins over Ancient Eight opponents in non-league matches this season.  Significantly, it took a monumental effort from Princeton's Matt Spindler to accomplish this feat, as he beat Hoffman by the slimmest of margins in a 6-3, 2-6, 7-6(6) win.

Both teams have fairly quick turnarounds.  Princeton will trek to Providence, R.I., to face Brown on Sunday.  The Bulldogs, meanwhile, will have to regroup from Saturday's setback for its match at home on Sunday against Penn (8-7, 0-2 Ivy) at 2:00 p.m. 

Report by Robert Batista '15, Yale Sports Publicity


 Position  Princeton University  Yale University  Winner  Score
 #1 Singles  #7 Matija Pecotic  John Huang  Princeton University  6--1, 6-4
 #2 Singles  Zack McCourt  Marc Powers  Yale University  6-2, 6-3
 #3 Singles  Matt Spindler  Daniel Hoffman  Princeton University  6-3, 2-6, 7-6 (6)
 #4 Singles  Matt Siow  Martin Svenning  Yale University  7-5, 7-5
 #5 Singles  Dan Richardson  Jason Brown  Princeton University  6-4, 6-4
 #6 Singles  Jonathan Carcione  Zach Dean  Princeton University  6-2, 6-4
 #1 Doubles  #33Zack McCourt
 Matija Pecotic
 #74 Daniel Hoffman
 Marc Powers
 Princeton University  8-4
 #2 Doubles  Matt Spindler
 Dan Davies
 John Huang
 Patrick Chase
 Unfinished  5-5 DNF
 #3 Doubles  Augie Bloom
 Matt Siow
 Jason Brown
 Martin Svenning
 Princeton University  8-3