COLUMBUS, Ohio – The fourth seed Ohio State men’s tennis team battled out a thriller against Big Ten rival fifth seed Michigan in the NCAA Championship quarterfinal round in their fourth matchup of the season. The Buckeyes fought through a rain delay and still kept their poise despite moving indoors. They got the clinching singles point from captain Andrew Lutschaunig and won 4-2 to advance to Saturday’s semifinals.
In doubles the Buckeyes were fighting from behind for the majority of the match. Andrew Lutschaunig/Justin Boulais had a difficult early deficit to overcome, and Maloney/Beaty finished the match with a 6-2 win. Cannon Kingsley and JJ Tracy were down for most of the match until tying it at 3-3. However, Styler and Bickersteth fought back and finished the match with a 6-4 win. No. 2 Matej Vocel and Robert Cash were locked in a 5-5 clash with No. 24 ranked Fenty and Ehrenschneider at the conclusion of the doubles matches.
The Buckeyes were trailing 1-0 but found early momentum in singles to counter. Ohio State had early leads in five of six matches, but around fifteen minutes in, the weather threw a thunderstorm curveball that forced the teams indoors. However, this did not affect the Buckeye momentum. Tracy finished first with a huge 6-2, 6-2 win that tied the match at 1-1. Justin Boulais, who has been dominant this tournament, had another big win that put the Buckeyes in the lead at 2-1 with his 6-2, 6-3 victory. Moments later, two matches concluded with No. 9 Kingsley’s 6-4, 6-4 win over No. 27 Styler and Jake Van Emburgh’s 3-6, 3-6 loss making the score 3-2 in favor of the Buckeyes. Lutschaunig had the deciding point for Ohio State with his match clinching ace to win 7-6(9), 6-4.
The Buckeyes will face eight seed Kentucky on Saturday at 11:00 am ET in the NCAA semifinals.
#4 Ohio State 4, #5 Michigan 2
1. #9 Cannon Kingsley (OSU) def. #27 Ondrej Styler (UM) 6-4, 6-4
2. #13 Matej Vocel (OSU) vs. #88 Patrick Maloney (UM) 6-1, 5-7, 4-2, unfinished
3. #19 JJ Tracy (OSU) def. #63 Andrew Fenty (UM) 6-2, 6-2
4. #61 Jacob Bickersteth (UM) def. #122 Jake Van Emburgh (OSU) 6-3, 6-3
5. #46 Justin Boulais (OSU) def. #77 Nino Ehrenschneider (UM) 6-2, 6-3
6. Andrew Lutschaunig (OSU) def. Nick Beaty (UM) 7-6(9), 6-4
1. #2 Matej Vocel/Robert Cash (OSU) vs. #24 Andrew Fenty/Nino Ehrenschneider (UM) 5-5, unfinished
2. Patrick Maloney/Nick Beaty (UM) def. Andrew Lutschaunig/Justin Boulais (OSU) 6-2
3. Ondrej Styler/Jacob Bickersteth (UM) def. Cannon Kingsley/JJ Tracy (OSU) 6-4
Ohio State 28-3
Order of finish: Doubles (2,3); Singles (3,5,1,4,6)