Feb. 22, 2009
EVANSTON, Ill. -- Northwestern swept No. 48 Harvard, 7-0, at Combe Tennis Center Sunday behind strong doubles play and victories from all six singles spots. Led by senior Marc Dwyer (Peachtree City, Ga./University of Nebraska - Independent Study H.S.), who notched his second triumph over a ranked opponent in four days, the `Cats won eight of nine matches to improve to a 10-1 record in duals.
After narrowly losing to Notre Dame on Thursday night, the Wildcats played with a vengeance this weekend with their 5-2 victory over Western Michigan Saturday and Sunday's rout of Harvard. The Crimson fell to No. 19 Michigan Friday evening, but managed to take two points at No. 1 and No. 2 singles, a feat they were not able to accomplish against the `Cats.
Sunday's last match on the courts was a nailbiter between two tough seniors in Marc Dwyer and No. 71 Chris Clayton. The Wildcat took the first set, 6-3, with relative ease, but both players held tough in the second and neither lost serve to send it into a tiebreak.
Dwyer took control in the breaker, jumping out to a 5-1 lead behind a series of powerful serves. Clayton put up a struggle, but the Wildcat senior held on, 7-4, to post his second victory over a ranked opponent. Thursday evening, Dwyer toughed out a 6-4, 1-6, 7-5 Notre Dame's 18th-ranked Brett Helgeson.
In doubles, Northwestern jumped out to an early lead behind strong play at the No. 2 and No. 3 spots. The tandem of Andrew McCarthy (Cincinnati, Ohio/Indian Hills) and Alexander Thams (Stockholm, Sweden/Enskilda Gymnasiet) dominated the Crimson's Davis Mangham and Robertson McAnulty, 8-1, to post their fifth victory of the season at No. 3.
After suffering their first loss of the season Saturday against Western Michigan, Alex Sanborn (Houston, Texas/Kinkaid) and Joshua Graves (Milwaukee, Wis./Nicolet) bounced back with a convincing win over Harvard's Michael Hayes and Aba Omodele-Lucien. Graves served out the match with a love game and match point came on an Omodele-Lucien return error.
and Tobias Reitz
(Reinbeck, Germany/Sachsenwaldschule Reinbeck) fell to Chris Clayton and Alexei Chijoff-Evans, 8-3, at No. 1.
Thams kept the momentum up for the Wildcats with a 6-3, 6-0 decision over the Crimson's Hayes at No. 3. The players were evenly matched for the first couple of games, but the Wildcat quickly took control and reeled off seven consecutive games for the win.
Graves upped NU's lead to 3-0 with a dominant 6-2, 6-2 performance over Harvard's Omodele-Lucien. The Wildcat freshman held comfortably throughout and broke the Harvard sophomore's serve four times, finishing the match with a crosscourt backhand passing shot winner.
Freshman Reitz bounced back from a loss Saturday to clinch the dual for the `Cats at No. 2 singles. His 6-2, 6-4 defeat of Alexei Chijoff-Evans marks his fifth dual victory. The point of the match was in the first set when Reitz hit a backhand passing shot while on a dead run past the outstretched racket of the Crimson player.
Captain Alex Sanborn posted his team-leading 10th singles victory over Crimson freshman Davis Mangham at No. 4. The first set stayed close as the players traded breaks, but the Wildcat took control in the second, producing three breaks en route to the 6-1 rout. Sophomore McCarthy put the `Cats up 6-0 with a 6-4, 6-0 decision over Harvard's McAnulty at No. 6.
The `Cats next face a month-long stretch of away matches, beginning with William & Mary Friday, February 27. Play at the McCormack-Nagelsen Tennis Center is set to start at 5 p.m. CT.
Northwestern 7, Harvard 0
1. Alexei Chijoff-Evans/Chris Clayton (HU) def. Marc Dwyer/Tobias Reitz (NU) 8-3
2. Joshua Graves/Alex Sanborn (NU) def. Michael Hayes/Aba Omodele-Lucien (HU) 8-5
3. Andrew McCarthy/Alexander Thams (NU) def. Robertson McAnulty/Davis Mangham (HU) 8-1
1. Marc Dwyer (NU) def. Chris Clayton (HU) 6-3, 7-6 (7-4)
2. Tobias Reitz (NU) def. Alexei Chijoff-Evans (HU) 6-2, 6-4
3. Alexander Thams (NU) def. Michael Hayes (HU) 6-3, 6-0
4. Alex Sanborn (NU) def. Davis Mangham (HU) 6-4, 6-1
5. Joshua Graves (NU) def. Aba Omodele-Lucien (HU) 6-2, 6-2
6. Andrew McCarthy (NU) def. Robertson McAnulty (HU) 6-4, 6-0