Bulldogs Drop out of Ivy League Title Contention with Loss to No. 22 Harvard

John Huang. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
John Huang. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Hoffman and Huang Salvage Wins for No. 57 Yale

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Yale men's tennis team dropped just its second home match of the season on Sunday in a 5-2 loss to No. 22 Harvard (17-4, 5-0 Ivy).  Though the Crimson raced to a decisive 5-0 lead, senior captain Daniel Hoffman and classmate John Huang managed to grind out three-set victories in singles.

Despite the loss, No. 57 Yale (17-6, 3-3 Ivy) keeps its hold on the No. 4 spot in the Ivy League standings.  The Elis will be unable to capture the conference title, however, as Harvard, No. 47 Columbia (15-7, 5-2 Ivy) and No. 48 Princeton (16-6, 5-2 Ivy) are all guaranteed to finish the season with better league records than the Bulldogs.

The Crimson brought out their best in doubles, with the No. 52 team in the nation of Casey MacMaster and Denis Nguyen ousting Yale's duo of Hoffman and senior Marc Powers 8-5 at No. 1 doubles.  Harvard's No. 2 tandem of Nicky Hu and Andy Nguyen were equally successful against the Bulldog pairing of Huang and junior Patrick Chase, emerging with the 8-5 win.

With the doubles point in their pockets, the Crimson were able to quell the Bulldogs' resistance in singles play and clinch the overall victory, as they gained victories at the No.'s 2, 4, 5 and 6 spots.  As a testament to Yale's resilience, however, neither Hoffman nor Huang would go down without a fight.  Both of these veteran seniors, playing in their penultimate matches as Bulldogs, made strong comebacks after having dropped their opening sets.  At No. 1 singles, Huang finished in style, securing the 4-6, 6-4, 1-0(3) triumph over Denis Nguyen.  At No. 3 singles, Hoffman produced his best tennis down the stretch against Andy Nguyen to win his second three-set match in a row, 3-6, 6-3, 7-5.

The final match of Yale's 2012-13 season will take place at home on Saturday, Apr. 27, when the Bulldogs square off against Brown.  The Elis defeated the Bears 4-3 earlier this season at the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division I Indoor Team Championship.  A win over Brown on Sunday would solidify Yale's position at No. 4 in the Ivy League standings.

Report by Robert Batista '15, Yale Sports Publicity


 Position  Yale University  Harvard University  Winner  Score
 #1 Singles  John Huang  Denis Nguyen  Yale University  4-6, 6-4, 1-0 (3)
 #2 Singles  Marc Powers  Shaun Chaudhuri  Harvard University  6-4, ret.
 #3 Singles  Daniel Hoffman  Andy Nguyen  Yale University  3-6, 6-3, 7-5
 #4 Singles  Martin Svenning  Alex Steinroeder  Harvard University  6-2, 6-4
 #5 Singles  Zach Dean  Nicky Hu  Harvard University  6-4, 6-3
 #6 Singles  Kyle Dawson  Kelvin Lam  Harvard University  6-2, 6-0
 #1 Doubles  Daniel Hoffman
 Marc Powers
 #52 Denis Nguyen
 Casey MacMaster
 Harvard University  8-5
 #2 Doubles  John Huang
 Patrick Chase
 Andy Nguyen
 Nicky Hu
 Harvard University  8-5
 #3 Doubles  Martin Svenning
 Matt Saiontz
 Alex Steinroeder
 Kelvin Lam
 Unfinished  6-4