Men’s tennis team opens with a strong start to the regular season


Courtesy of CWRU Athletics

Third-year Sahil Dayal was selected to the All-Tournament team for his stellar perforamance in singles (1-0) and doubles (5-2).

Kyle Grover, Staff Writer

This past weekend, Case Western Reserve University’s men’s tennis team started their regular season at the UT Rocket Invitational at the University of Toledo and the Kenyon Invitational at Kenyon College. The Spartans were looking to build upon their success in the previous regular season and continue their undefeated streak against Division III opponents in the new regular season.

CWRU tennis started their weekend off with stiff competition at the UT Rocket Invitational where the Spartans played matches against Division I Holy Cross and Toledo, Division III Denison University and the University of Chicago (the previous NCAA national champions) and the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics Northwestern Ohio. The men’s tennis team finished the tournament with a strong record of 15-5 in singles and 11-4 in doubles. The Spartans continued this momentum at the Kenyon Invitational where they finished with a record of 17-14 in singles and 7-8 in doubles. 

In addition to the team’s success, CWRU’s men’s tennis second-year Ajay Mahenthiran and third-year Sahil Dayal were selected to the All-Tournament team. Mahenthiran was also selected as the UAA Athlete of the Week for the first time in his career. Mahenthiran had an outstanding performance at the invitationals with a 5-1 record in singles matches. He defeated Mees Sebgrets of Northwestern Ohio (6-0, 6-0), Marek Michulka of UChicago (6-3, 6-1), Andy Mackler of Denison (6-0, 6-4), Laurenz Flender of Holy Cross (6-3, 6-3) and Matias Ilivero of Toledo (6-1, 6-4).  

“I think the weekend was a big test for us because coming into it, the invitational was the first weekend of competition where we didn’t have our leaders from last year,” said Mahenthiran when asked to reflect on the team’s performance. “It was really on us to create our energy and compete on our own as a new team. I thought we maybe started off the weekend slow … but by the second match we really hit our stride and competed well as a team. It especially felt good to take down University of Chicago after last year’s national championship match.”

Mahenthiran was satisfied with his own playing in the invitationals, adding, “I think, for me personally, the weekend was really special because I played extremely well against the highest caliber of opponents I had ever played in college. It really showed me that all the work I had put in during the summer and into fall paid off.”

Fourth-year James Hopper, third-year Vishwa Aduru and second-year Ansh Shah will compete in the main singles draw at the ITA Fall Regional Championships in St. Louis from Sept. 24-26. Mahenthiran, Dayal, second-year Casey Hisinuma, fourth-year Michael Sutanto and fourth-year Chris Provenzano will compete in the main doubles draw. The rest of the Spartans will travel to Granville, Ohio for the Denison Invitational on Sept. 24.