The Case Western Reserve University men’s tennis team, ranked No. 20, traveled to Pennsylvania and won two of three matches. The Spartans cruised over Haverford College with an 8-1 win and scraped by Swarthmore College 6-3 before dropping the match against No. 7 Amherst College, losing 6-3.
The Spartans breezed through the first match against Haverford, winning all three doubles matches. Fourth-year player James Fojtasek lead the squad with an 8-6 win in first doubles before winning it himself 6-4, 6-3 in singles. First-year players Jonathan Powell and Neil Mabee won 8-1, along with second-year player Sam Concannon and first-year player Matthew Chen.
“It was a smooth win for us, our single players [pulled through] in the tight matches…. Coach wanted to keep the intensity high for the rest of the weekend,” Powell said.
Against Swarthmore, ranked No. 21, the Spartans were able to overcome two doubles losses initially, winning five of six single matches. Chen and Concannon highlighted the Spartans strong singles performance by picking up clean 6-2, 6-4 and 6-2, 6-0 victories, respectively.
“[We weren’t] playing well, last time we beat them 8-1…. We had trouble with fundamental things and was just our off-day,” Powell said.
And then, there was the final boss waiting一Amherst waiting for a challenge, ranked No. 7. The Spartans were looking to pull an upset with both second and third doubles winning. Even with a 2-1 lead heading into singles play, the Spartans were unable pull off the win. Powell made his debut in the singles lineup at sixth singles, picking up a solid 6-3, 6-3 victory.
“[I was] excited for the big match and focused on my own match … [and] played offensively as possible,” Powell said. “It was tough. Some of our guys had off days … it sucks to have a good start for doubles, but we fought hard.”
He continued, “[Concannon] started strong in second doubles, won a tight third set in singles [against Haverford] … against Swarthmore his matches were clean, and fought hard in singles despite the loss.”
He said the team hopes to clean up match play, as team results were scattered during the first two sets.
The Spartans will play Franciscan University of Steubenville this weekend on Sunday, April 8 at home.