WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – In a nearly seven hour match that featured two lightning delays, No. 3 Ohio State dug deep and avenged one of its two losses on the season, defeating No. 2 UCLA 4-1 to advance to the NCAA Championship match.
In warm humid conditions at the start of the match, the Buckeyes rallied at No. 2 and 3 doubles to win both matches in a tiebreak. That turned out to be a huge point for a number of reasons. Not only did it put the Buckeyes in front 1-0 but it gave them momentum as the teams sat through a pair of lightning delays.
The first delay came shortly after the start of the singles matches and lasted just over three hours. The teams each won three of the first six sets before the second delay came. That one lasted about 40 minutes and the Bruins would come out of that break with a little more momentum.
But the Buckeyes settled in and were able to close out the match. After UCLA evened the score at 1-1 with a win on court six, Mikael Torpegaard posted his second win of the season over No. 1 Martin Redlicki 6-3, 3-6, 6-4. He broke Redlicki in each of his last two service games.
Kyle Seelig has been playing some of his best tennis at the right time of the year and he put up the third point with a 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 win over Logan Staggs. The clinching point came from junior Martin Joyce. He split the first two sets with Maxime Cressy and then went up an early break in the third. He would hold to go up 5-4 and broke again to win the match 6-4.
– The match was delayed two different times and didn’t end until nearly seven hours after it startedThis was Ohio State’s 22nd -consecutive win this season and the Buckeyes improve to 34-2 overall
– This was the fifth meeting between Ohio State and UCLA in the NCAA Tournament and it was the Buckeyes second victory
– Ohio State advances to the championship match for just the second time in program history
– Kyle Seelig is on a 10-match win streak and has a team-high 31 singles victories
– This was Mikael Torpegaard’s second victory over No. 1 Martin Redlicki this season as he also defeated him at the ITA Indoor Team Championships in February.
The Buckeyes will take on host Wake Forest in the championship match on Tuesday evening at 5 p.m. This will be the second meeting in the NCAA Tournament as the Buckeyes won in the second round in 2014. The teams also met in the ITA National Indoor Championships last year and the Buckeyes were victorious 4-3.
No. 3. Ohio State 4, No. 2 UCLA 1
1. #29 Martin Redlicke/Evan Zhu (UCLA) def. Martin Joyce/JJ Wolf (OHIO STATE) 7-5
2. #61 Mikael Torpegaard/John McNally (OHIO STATE) def. #16 Austin Rapp/Keegan Smith (UCLA) 7-6 (4)
3. Matt Mendez/Hunter Tubert (OHIO STATE) def. Maxime Cressy/Bryce Pereira (UCLA) def. 7-6 (3)
1. #6 Mikael Torpegaard (OHIO STATE) def. #1 Martin Redlicki (UCLA) 3-6, 6-3, 6-4
2. #81 Evan Zhu (UCLA) vs. #41 JJ Wolf (OHIO STATE) 5-7, 6-4, 4-1, unf.
3. #92 John McNally (OHIO STATE) vs. 56 Keegan Smith (UCLA) 6-7(5), 6-4, 2-0, unf.
4. #96 Kyle Seelig (OHIO STATE) def. #103 Logan Staggs (UCLA) 6-3, 3-6, 6-3
5. #112 Martin Joyce (OHIO STATE) def. Maxime Cressy (UCLA) 6-2, 3-6, 6-4
6. Connor Hance (UCLA) def. Hunter Tubert (OHIO STATE) 7-5, 6-3
Order of Finish: Doubles (1,2,3) Singles (6,1,4,5)