Dores Scratch Cats

Men’s tennis upsets No. 19 Northwestern, 6-1, for top-20 win of the season

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Vanderbilt men’s tennis knocked off a top-20 opponent with an upset win over Big Ten foe and No. 19 Northwestern, 6-1, Wednesday at the Currey Tennis Center.

“I thought our team did a great job,” said head coach Ian Duvenhage. “Ryan (Lipman), Connor (Rapp) and I could just tell during the warm-up before the match that they were in a great place mentally and emotionally. They were enthusiastic and happy.”

Doubles duo Siim Troost and Michael Ross, who entered the ITA doubles rankings at No. 76, fought hard to give the Dores the edge after clinching the opening point. In singles play, Vandy picked up wins on five of the six courts, including a ranked win from senior Marcus Ferreira on Court 3.

“We did a good job in doubles,” noted Duvenhage. “I thought we were mentally tough because at No. 1 doubles, we were up two breaks at 5-1 or 5-2 and then they came all the way back to 5-5. Then we played a great game to break and serve it out, which made a big difference because that put the momentum in our favor. I thought in singles for us to play a top-20 team and win four matches in straight sets says a lot.”

The last time the Dores won over the Wildcats was Jan. 19, 2019, in a convincing 5-2 victory at the Currey Tennis Center. With the nonconference win, Vandy now stands at 9-2 on the season as it heads to Texas A&M for Southeastern Conference play Friday.

“I think this team is slowly but surely learning what they are capable of doing,” noted Duvenhage. “I’m excited to see what else they accomplish this year.”

Doubles Domination

  • Seniors George Harwell and Max Freeman teamed up to defeat Brian Berdusco and Simen Bratholm of Northwestern, for a 6-3 win on Court 2.
  • The Commodores clinched the elusive first point on the top court when Troost and Ross fought-hard against Northwestern’s Felix Nordby/Steven Forman, 7-5. Prior to the match, Troost and Ross entered the ITA doubles rankings at No. 76, and now hold a 6-2 dual record.
  • On Court 3, Ferreira and junior Joubert Klopper were trailing their Wildcats opponents 3-5 when their match was ruled unfinished due to the Dores clinching the doubles point.

Sensational Singles

  • The momentum continued in favor of the Dores as Freeman put the first singles point on the board after a pair of 6-3 set wins against his Northwestern opponent, on Court 4.
  • 67th-ranked Steven Forman claimed Northwestern’s only point of the match after an upset win over No. 39 Harwell in straight sets, 6-2, 6-4, on the top court.
  • At No. 2 singles, Klopper defeated Northwestern’s Bratholm in straight sets, 6-3, 6-4.
  • Casabon clinched his first match of the season after a two-set thriller over his Wildcats opponent, 6-3, 6-2, on Court 5. The victory gave Vandy the 4-1 lead while the remaining singles played out.
  • Ferreira claimed his second ranked singles win of the season in a battle over No. 100 Trice Pickens of Northwestern, 7-6 (1), 4-6, 11-9, on Court 3.
  • Troost grabbed the sixth and final point for the Dores on Court 6 after defeating his Northwestern opposition in straight sets. The junior won a decisive first set 6-4 before a hard-fought second set tiebreaker, 7-6 (7).

On Deck

The Dores will continue SEC play on the road to take on the Aggies at 6 p.m. Friday before returning home to close out the weekend against Drake at 9 a.m. Sunday, which was originally scheduled for Feb. 4.

Dores Scratch Cats by Vanderbilt Athletics on on Exposure