Irish men’s tennis splits weekend series in Lexington
Nate Moller | Tuesday, January 31, 2023
The Irish men’s tennis team headed to Lexington, Kentucky, this past weekend, taking on Washington in the opening round of the ITA Kickoff.
The No. 1 doubles team of freshman Sebastian Dominko and senior Connor Fu set the tone for the Irish early, winning their opening match 6-1. Although No. 2 doubles went the way of the Huskies, the Irish earned an exciting victory in the No. 3 matchup.
Senior Matt Halpin and freshman Evan Lee got broken early in the set. But they broke back when they were down 4-5 to stay alive. Both sides then held serve, and the set went to a tiebreaker to decide the winner. After saving two match points, Lee hit a volley that bounced twice on the net. It then dribbled over to give the Irish duo the set.
In the singles matches, Dominko led things off for the Irish, winning by a comfortable 6-2, 6-1 margin. Although senior Matt Che and graduate student Addy Vashistha would drop their matches in straight sets, Fu won his singles match 6-1, 7-6 to give the Irish the lead heading into the final two singles matches.
The Irish needed just one win in the final two matches. Sophomore Jameson Corsillo clinched it for the Irish by earning a 6-1, 6-4 win. Sophomore Yu Zhang was also leading 7-5, 4-2 before the match was called.
On Saturday afternoon, the Irish faced fifth-ranked Kentucky with a bid to the ITA National Indoors on the line. Although the Irish lost quickly in the No. 3 doubles, the No. 1 and No. 2 doubles teams bounced back to give the Irish the advantage after doubles play. Dominko and Fu won 6-3 for their fourth consecutive doubles victory. Che and Zhang fought back from an early break point to win the set in a tiebreaker.
Singles play did not go the way of the Irish though. They fell at No. 2, No. 3 and No. 4 singles. Dominko fought valiantly for the Irish, winning the first set 6-2 and coming within two points of winning the match. He ultimately lost, however, in three sets, and Kentucky earned a 4-1 victory.
Contact Nate Moller at [email protected].