Princeton men’s tennis (2–3 overall, 0–0 Ivy League) rallied to close out the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Kickoff Weekend with a dominant win over Rice University (3–2 overall, 0–0 American Athletic Conference).
They played at Texas Christian University’s (TCU) Bayard H. Friedman Tennis Center in Fort Worth, TX, and finished with a 1–1 record on the weekend to kickstart ITA play.
The weekend opened for the third-seeded Tigers on Saturday with a battle against the second-seeded Tulsa University Golden Hurricanes, who bested the Tigers four points to three. The bracket consisted of the Tigers, the Golden Hurricanes, the fourth-seed Rice University Owls, and the first-seeded host TCU Horned Frogs, who won the championship game on Sunday against the Hurricanes.
Tulsa stole back the doubles point after the first doubles, first-year team of Paul Inchauspe and Landon Ardila clutched a decisive 6–4 win. Second and third doubles both fought hard for the Tigers, however, they lost each of their respective matches 7–5.
The Golden Hurricanes ultimately emerged victorious from the singles match-up as well, but not without resistance from the Tigers.
Princeton tied the singles record 3–3 after Tiger triumphs from sophomores Sebastian Sec and Ellis Short, as well as Ardila, but the second doubles point seized by Tulsa early in the match-up proved to be decisive for their eventual win.
By the end of Saturday, the weekend was far from over for the Tigers.
Sunday play for Princeton began at noon against Rice in a consolation match. After a 3–0 sweep of the Owls’ doubles teams to kick off the matchup, the Tigers captured the doubles point.
The first doubles duo of Inchauspe and Ardila once again managed to emerge victorious with a 6–3 win. Sec and Short held down the fort with a 6–4 win to secure the doubles point in favor of the Tigers.
Ardila (6–2, 6–4), Sec (6–4, 6–2), and sophomore Fnu Nidunjianzan (7–6, 6–4) closed out the Kickoff Weekend on a high note for the Tigers with a decisive three wins to give the Tigers the clean sweep.
The Tigers will be back in Princeton, NJ next weekend to host a double-header with Liberty University (4–1, 0–0 ASUN Conference) and Drexel University (2–0, 0–0 Coastal Athletic Conference).
“The end of last weekend was promising, we are all extremely excited for our home opener this Sunday,” Inchauspe wrote to The Daily Princetonian. “We are looking to build off of last weekend and use that momentum for the rest of the season. Our team has been training hard and is looking strong.”
Josefina Gurevich is a Sports staff writer for the ‘Prince.’
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