May 1, 2019

Tennis Takes on the UAA Championships

Men’s and women’s tennis finished off their seasons excellently with each taking podium finishes at the UAA championships over the weekend. Men’s tennis placed third in the University Athletic Association while women’s tennis finished second.

For the nationally first-ranked Maroon men, the weekend began on Friday, April 26, against eighth-ranked Rochester. Chicago breezed through their quarterfinal opponents five wins to zero losses in their quest to defend last year’s championship before facing off with the 10th-ranked Brandeis Judges. In a disappointing surprise, the Maroons fell in a close 5–3 loss, ending the hope of a repeat first-place title. Strong performances by second-year Alejandro Rodriguez—who won in two sets, 6–1 and 6–2—and first-year Alex Guzvha—two sets of 6–4—proved unable to stem Brandeis’s advance. Still, the Maroons’ weekend was not over just yet, and they were able to redeem themselves at Sunday’s third-place match against hated rivals Wash U. The Maroons trapped the seventh-ranked Washington Bears 5–1, led by an incredible sweep by all three doubles teams: third-years Erik Kerrigan and Ninan Kumar; fourth-year Charlie Pei and first-year Joshua Xu; and third-year Tyler Raclin and second-year Jeremy Yuan. The Maroon men also had success in singles, with Guzvha winning his match 6–2 and 6–3 and Kerrigan triumphing in a drawn out 2–6, 7–6, 7–4, 6–4 contest.

The future of Maroon men’s tennis will be revealed next Monday, when the NCAA tournament field will be revealed.

Meanwhile, women’s tennis got off to a flying start Thursday, April 25, with a 5–0 triumph against a hapless Wash U team. Though every Maroon performed admirably, first-year Eugenia Lee stood out with a flawless 6–0, 6–0 victory over her Wash U opponent. Women’s tennis’s success continued in Friday’s quarterfinal match, where they seized a 5–0 victory over Brandeis in the semifinal match. Top performers include first-year Annika Pandey, who won two straight to finish the match at 6–1, 6–1; and first-year Lauren Park, who paired a 6–0 and a 6–2 to vanquish her opponent. Despite being undefeated in earlier rounds, the Maroons found first-seeded Emory University a much more difficult opponent. After nine laborious matches, the Maroons fell in a heart-breaking 5–4 nail-biter on Saturday; first-year Eugenia Lee narrowly fell to her Emory Eagle opponent in a 6–7 (4–7), 6–2, 6–4 bout. This makes the 2019 season the third straight to end with women’s tennis taking the second step on the podium at the UAA championships. 

Like the Maroon men, women’s tennis awaits a possible at-large bid to the NCAA Division III championships on May 10.