NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Turning its attention to Southeastern Conference play, Vanderbilt men’s tennis will host No. 22 Georgia 2 p.m. Friday at Currey Tennis Center, before visiting Arkansas 1 p.m. Sunday.
Admission to Friday’s match against the Bulldogs is free of charge and parking is available on floors 9-11 of the 25th Avenue Garage (enter from Highland Avenue).
Picked to finish last in the preseason SEC coaches’ poll, the Commodores currently sit atop the SEC standings with a 7-1 record entering conference play this weekend.
Marketing Promos and Giveaways – Chick-Fil-A
We are serving up some food for our SEC opener and the first outdoor match of the season. The first 100 people that arrive will each receive a Chick-Fil-A sandwich for the afternoon.
Vandy split a pair of matches last weekend to move to 7-1 on the season. The Dores fell to No. 11 Harvard last Friday before earning a hard-fought, ranked win against Cornell last Sunday.
Vandy suffered their first loss of the season last Friday evening as they faced Harvard in New England, falling to the Crimson 6-1. In doubles, senior duo George Harwell and Max Freeman gave the Dores an edge, defeating their Crimson opponents in a quick 6-1 set on Court 2. Harvard grabbed a win on Court 1 and eventually clinched the opening point. During singles play, sophomore Jeremie Casabon snapped the Dores’ shutout streak with a win over Harvard’s Daniel Milavsky, 1-6, 7-6 (7), [10-8], on Court 5.
The resilient Dores concluded their weekend with a win in a highly contested match over ranked Cornell, 4-3, on neutral ground last Sunday. After dropping the doubles point to open the match, Vandy picked up four singles points over Cornell. Junior Siim Troost, Freeman and Casabon added to Vandy’s point total before Harwell, who sits at No. 54 in the current ITA singles rankings, clinched the tightly contested three-set match over No. 34 Alafia Ayeni of Cornell on the top court. The singles win marked Harwell’s fifth clincher (three singles, two doubles) of the season.
Scouting the Opponents
- 22 Georgia (8-3): The last time both teams met was the final road match of the 2021 season when the Dores fell to the Bulldogs by a score of 4-1 in Athens, Georgia. The Bulldogs competed in the 47th annual ITA National Men’s Indoor Championship Feb. 18-20 where the squad had its lone win over the weekend against host Washington, 4-3. Georgia is coming off an upset win at home against Big 12 foe and No. 12 Texas, 4-3. Individually, five Georgia players are ranked in the latest ITA singles rankings led by No. 22 Hamish Stewart, while the four ranked doubles duos are led by No. 41 Trent Bryde and Philip Henning.
- Arkansas (9-4): The last time the Dores won over the Razorbacks was March 2019 in a highly contested 4-3 match in Fayetteville, Arkansas. The season before, Vandy dominated Arkansas in a 6-1 win at the Currey Tennis Center. The Razorbacks are 8-1 at home and hold a 9-4 dual record heading into SEC play this weekend. In the most recent ITA singles rankings, Aleksa Bucan, Alexandre Reco and Oscar Pinto Sansano, rank, No. 37, No. 38 and No. 119, respectively. In doubles play, Adrien Burdet and Melvin Manuel sit at No. 47 in the latest ITA doubles rankings.
Harwell, a senior and No. 1 singles player, sits at No. 54 in the latest ITA singles rankings.
Klopper Earns SEC Honors
Junior Joubert Klopper was named SEC Player of the Week, as announced by the league office on Feb. 16.
The native of Bloemfontein, South Africa, was honored for his 7-0 dual record at the time, which included three wins during the doubleheader against ACC foe Virginia Tech and The Citadel on Feb. 13. Klopper clinched the match against the Hokies in a two-set thriller, 7-6 (2), 6-4, on Court 2. Later in the afternoon, Klopper moved up to the top singles spot to defeat his Bulldogs opponent in straight sets, 6-2, 6-0.
Currently, he has a combined 31-9 record including 18-5 in singles and 13-4 in doubles. During the dual season, Klopper’s 11-4 record is highlighted by singles play at 6-2.
For full press release, click here.
On the Radar
Vandy is set for a trio of matches next week, starting with a mid-week match against Big Ten foe and No. 12 Northwestern, next Wednesday. The Dores will continue SEC play on the road to take on Texas A&M next Friday before returning home to close out the weekend against Drake.
The match against the Wildcats was previously set for Feb. 20, while the Bulldogs were originally scheduled for Feb. 4.