COLUMBUS, Ohio – The No. 3 Ohio State men’s tennis team moved to 16-2 with its 4-0 victory over Big Ten rival Illinois. The Buckeyes are now 2-0 vs. Illinois this season; their first win was the third match of the year in January and was a 4-0 sweep in Champaign. After today’s victory, the Buckeyes have won 10 of their last 11 matches against Illinois.
This was Coach Tucker’s 29th win vs. the Fighting Illini since taking over the program in 2000.
In doubles, Cannon Kingsley and JJ Tracy took a quick 4-1 lead. They finished first on court two after defending an Illinois rally with a decisive 6-4 victory. The new duo of Jake Van Emburgh and Justin Boulais took an early 2-1 lead; they were nearly able to defend Illinois’ three game onslaught after being down 4-2 but fell 4-6 in a close final set. It came down to Matej Vocel and Robert Cash, the number one ranked doubles team in the country, to decide the doubles point. It was a back-and-forth battle, but Vocel and Cash found themselves chasing 50th ranked duo Heck and Horve. However, after a clutch deuce point win, they sent it to a tiebreaker at 6-6 to decide the doubles point. The tiebreaker was a back and forth fight as well and was tied at 6-6, but Vocel and Cash sealed the win after winning two straight points clinching it with a phenomenal play at the net.
In singles, the Buckeyes came out hot with Kingsley, Vocel and Van Emburgh winning their first sets 6-2 and Cash winning his first set 6-3. The Buckeyes’ kept their foot on the gas going into the second sets. Kingsley won in straight sets with a dominant 6-2, 6-1 performance. Van Emburgh followed soon after in similar fashion with a strong 6-2, 6-1 straight sets victory. Vocel clinched the Ohio State win for the third dominant Buckeye straight sets victory of the day with his 6-2, 6-2 win. Though unfinished Tracy rallied back from a 2-4 deficit to take his first set 6-4 and James Trotter won his first set with a tiebreaker win.
Dominant! 😤 pic.twitter.com/GxIJBISPul
— Ohio State M Tennis (@OhioStateMTEN) March 26, 2022
The Buckeye’s next match is against No. 20 Northwestern at home this Saturday at noon.
#3 Ohio State 4, #52 Illinois 0
1. #10 Cannon Kingsley (OSU) def. Siphosothando Montsi (ILL) 6-2, 6-1
2. #7 Matej Vocel (OSU) def. #62 Olivier Stuart (ILL) 6-2, 6-2
3. Jake Van Emburgh (OSU) def. Alex Brown (ILL) 6-2, 6-1
4. #11 JJ Tracy (OSU) vs. #96 Hunter Heck (ILL) 6-4, 0-2, unfinished
5. #42 James Trotter (OSU) vs. Nic Meister (ILL) 7-6 (2), 1-1, unfinished
6. #63 Robert Cash (OSU) vs. Gabrielius Guzauskas (ILL) 6-3, 1-6, unfinished
1. #1 Robert Cash/Matej Vocel (OSU) def. #50 Hunter Heck/Lucas Horve (ILL) 7-6 (8-6)
2. Cannon Kingsley/JJ Tracy (OSU) def. Alex Brown/Gabrielius Guzauskas (ILL) 6-4
3. #61 Siphosothando Montsi/Olivier Stuart (ILL) def. Justin Boulais/Jake Van Emburgh (OSU) 4-6
Ohio State 16-2; National ranking #3
Order of finish: Doubles (2,3,1); Singles (1,3,2)