Feb. 14, 2016
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The No. 8 Ohio State men’s tennis team capped the ITA Indoor Team Championships with a thrilling 4-3 victory over No. 3 Texas A&M on Sunday in Charlottesville, Va.
The win was the second of the weekend for the Buckeyes over a top-5 ranked team. OSU opened the weekend with a 4-0 win over No. 4 Baylor on Friday.
The match couldn’t have started much worse for the Buckeyes as they lost both the first and second doubles matches. The No. 14 ranked doubles team of Ralf Steinbach and Martin Joyce were defeated 6-0 on court one and the team of Chris Diaz and Hugo Di Feo also fell 6-2 on court two. Buckeyes Mikael Torpegaard and Matt Mendez were winning 5-2 on court three when the point was decided.
The singles matches were another story. The Buckeyes won four of the six matches in dramatic fashion. Joyce started the comeback by rolling Max Lunkin 6-2, 6-1 at No. 6. That was followed by perhaps Torpegaard’s best win of the season as he topped No. 8 Arthur Rinderknech in straight sets 6-4, 6-3. Torpegaard has a team leading 13 wins on the season.
With the Buckeyes leading 2-1, Texas A&M responded with wins at 2 and 3 to retake the lead. Diaz fell to Shane Vinsant 6-4, 6-4 and Di Feo dropped a 7-6, 6-4 decision to Jordi Arconada.
Pollanen lost the first set to AJ Catanzariti in a tie-break but bounced back to dominate the next two sets, winning 6-2, 6-0. That evened the match once again and left the outcome on the shoulders of junior Ralf Steinbach. The German native, who lost just his first singles match of the year on Saturday, won the opening set 7-5 over Jackson Withrow but would then drop the second set 6-4. In the third, Steinbach would rally and clinch the win for the Buckeyes with a 6-4 victory.
The win avenges the Buckeyes’ loss to Texas A&M in the round of 16 at last year’s NCAA Championship in Waco. The win will also be short lived as the two teams are set to square-off again this coming Friday, Feb. 19 at the OSU Varsity Tennis Center. Start time is set for 6 pm.
#8 Ohio State 4, #3 Texas A&M 3
1. #5 Mikael Torpegaard (OSU) def. #8 Arthur Rinderknech (TAMU) 6-4, 6-3
2. #39 Shane Vinsant (TAMU) def. #42 Chris Diaz (OSU) 6-4, 6-4
3. Jordi Arconada (TAMU) def. #16 Hugo Di Feo (OSU) 7-6, 6-4
4. #18 Herkko Pollanen (OSU) def. AJ Catanzariti (TAMU) 6-7, 6-2, 6-0
5. Ralf Steinbach (OSU) def. Jackson Withrow (TAMU) 7-5, 4-6, 6-4
6. Martin Joyce (OSU) def. Max Lunkin (TAMU) 6-2, 6-1
1. Arthur Rinderknech/Jackson Withrow (TAMU) def. #14 Ralf Steinbach/Martin Joyce (OSU) 6-0
2. Harrison Adams/Shane Vinsant (TAMU) def. Chris Diaz/Hugo Di Feo (OSU) 6-2
3. #33 Max Lunkin/Jordi Arconada (TAMU) vs. Mikael Torpegaard/Matt Mendez (OSU) 2-5, unfinished
Ohio State 10-1; National ranking #8
Texas A&M 10-2; National ranking #3
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2); Singles (6,1,2,3,4,5)
ITA National Team Indoors Consolation Match