Feb. 25, 2018
SOUTH BEND, Ind. – The No. 3 Ohio State Buckeyes get back on track in their first away match of the year after dropping their first match of the season during the ITA Team Indoor National Championship. Facing their seventh top-20 team of the season, the Scarlet and Gray won for the sixth time, defeating No. 17 Notre Dame 4-1. The Buckeyes improve to 11-1 on the season, and 6-1 against nationally ranked teams. The Fighting Irish drop to 7-5 and lose their fifth straight match.
The Buckeyes won the doubles point for the 10th time this season out of 12 matches. Quick to win for the Buckeyes was Matt Mendez and Hunter Tubert, who defeated Guillermo Cabrera and Alex Lebedev 6-2. They currently lead the Buckeyes with seven wins on the year.
Mikael Torpegaard and Martin Joyce were the eventual clinchers for the doubles point. Up 3-2, they were broken and down 3-4. From there, they won three straight games to take the set 6-4 over No. 28 Brendon Kempin and Tristan McCormick. JJ Wolf and John McNally were down 6-5 to Guillermo Cabrera and Alex Lebedev when the match was ended. The Buckeyes got back on track in doubles, as this is the first doubles point for the Buckeyes in three matches.
The singles matches were very even with three first sets going to both sides. However, the Buckeyes pulled away during the second sets. They soon made it 3-0 with comfortable wins by Joyce and McNally.
Joyce was first to win for the Buckeyes with a 6-1, 6-3 win over McCormick. McNally won soon thereafter with 6-1, 6-4 win over Cabrera. Later, the Fighting Irish put one on the board with a 6-4, 6-3 win by Matt Gamble over Kyle Seelig.
Clinching for the Buckeyes was Mikael Torpegaard, who defeated No. 35 Lebedev 7-5, 7-6. Breaking at 5-5 in the first set was a huge moment in the match. The tiebreaker in the second was also very clutch, as at that point, the remaining two matches could have gone either way. Wolf and Alex Kobelt both dropped the first set 6-4, came back in the second set 6-4, and were in the midst of third set deciders, both down 4-5.
The teams elected to play both of these matches out. Both matches had breaks at 5-5 in the third set, but for different teams. Kobelt lost first to make it two points for the Fighting Irish. Wolf tallied another point for the Buckeyes with a win over No. 125 Ciamarra to make the final score 5-2 Ohio State.
The Ohio State Buckeyes will make a quick return home to the Varsity Tennis Center before travelling for their next four matches. They will play Penn State at home 4 p.m. on Wednesday, February 28 to open Big Ten match play this season. From there, they will get a week break before going out to Athens, Georgia to face the No. 11 Georgia Bulldogs March 7 at 2:30 p.m.
#3 Ohio State 5, #17 Notre Dame 2
Ohio State 11-1; National ranking #3
Notre Dame 7-5; National ranking #17
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1); Singles (4,3,5,1,6,2)