Dartmouth Visits Saturday As Men's Tennis Battles For Second Place, NCAA At-Large Bid
Denis Nguyen has won his last three singles matches in the No. 1 position (Photo: Dean Bauer).
The Crimson looks to put an exclamation point on its bid for an at-large berth in the 2014 NCAA Tournament as it hosts Dartmouth in the final match of the regular season. The Crimson and Big Green are tied for second in the Ivy League standings with identical 5-1 league records.
Harvard holds the significant edge in the all-time series against the Big Green, posting a 72-7 record in 79 all-time meetings. The teams first faced off in 1926 and Harvard won the opening match, 6-0, as well as the following five contests. The Crimson collected 32-straight wins over the Big Green from 1953-86, and is currently riding a 23-match winning streak against Dartmouth.
Last Time Out
The Harvard men's tennis team had all cylinders firing Sunday on its home courts, as the Crimson blanked Ivy rival Yale, 7-0.
Christo Schultz and Sebastian Beltrame were the first doubles team to finish, utilizing the early break to power to an 8-5 finish. Nicky Hu and Brian Yeung were right on their heels on the second court, playing to a clean 8-3 win to claim Harvard's fifth straight doubles point. Denis Nguyen and Casey MacMaster were within points of the victory at first doubles, but play was stopped once the point was clinched.
Singles featured a sextet of straight-set victories, led by Beltrame's effort on the second court. The rookie peppered his opponent with deep balls and closed out a 6-2, 6-3 win to put the hosts up 2-0. Yeung finished soon after on the fifth court, serving out a 6-3, 6-2 win to bring Harvard within a point of the match victory. Alex Steinroeder had the honor of closing out the match for the Crimson, battling in the final game of a 6-3, 6-2 win at fourth singles. Shaun Chaudhuri and Nicky Hu finished nearly at the same time with the former claiming a 6-2, 6-4 win at No. 3 and the latter powering through the second set in a 6-4, 6-1 win at No. 5. Nguyen took a tiebreaker in the first set of his match and then stepped on the gas, finishing off a 7-6, 6-2 win on the top court.
About The Crimson
Despite an Ivy-opening loss to Columbia, the Crimson is still eyeing a bid to the NCAA tournament for the third straight season. Harvard sits tied with No. 42 Dartmouth for second in the Ivy standings, and would be in contention for an at-large bid with a win over the Big Green.
Denis Nguyen, the 41st-ranked played in the ITA singles poll, is 21-3 overall and 11-3 from the No. 1 position to lead the Crimson. Sebastian Beltrame is 5-4 from the second position, while Shaun Chaudhuri owns a 6-3 record out of the third spot. Nguyen and senior Casey MacMaster come in a No. 19 in the national doubles rankings and are 8-8 overall and 2-2 in Ivy doubles action. Brian Yeung and Nicky Hu, the No. 77-ranked pair, team up to own a 11-7 overall record and a 4-2 mark in Ivy action.
The Big Green is having a strong season, amassing 18 wins on the year, good for second among Ivy teams.
Dovydas Sakinis has been a staple atop the Dartmouth singles lineup, posting a 12-6 mark from the No. 1 position. Chris Kipouras is close behind at No. 2 with an 11-6 record and Dartmouth has collectively gone 16-2 at fourth singles. In doubles, Cameron Ghorbani and Brendan Tannenbaum form Dartmouth's top tandem, boasting an 11-3 dual mark and No. 30 national ranking.