Notre Dame, IN— The Irish started off the day on the right foot with a 7-0 sweep over the St. Bonaventure Bonnies. During the first matchup of the day, none of the matches required a tiebreaker and none of the singles matches required a third set. The Irish then had a serious case of deja vu during the second match against the Bonnies as they swept 7-0 once again.
“I thought our guys did a great job today throughout both matches. In general, our guys played aggressively and executed well," stated Head Coach Ryan Sachire. "We are excited about the opportunity tomorrow and ready to battle a good Michigan team.”
To kick things off, Richard Ciamarra and Matt Gamble downed Malmberg/Rivolo 6-1 on court 1. Next up was Matthew Halpin and Braeden Ho in their doubles debut of the 2020 season. The duo defeated Rutkowski/Blakeley on court 2, 6-3, to clinch the doubles point. Andrew Mariados and Tristan McCormick were unable to finish their match due to the Irish already claiming the doubles point over the Bonnies.
In his singles debut of the 2020 season, Matthew Halpin finished first in singles as he secured a quick 6-0, 6-1 win on court 5 against Jonni Heikkila. Richard Ciamarra followed suit with a 6-3, 6-2 victory over Lukas Linden Malmberg on court 1. With the Irish up 3-0, Matt Gamble came in clutch with the third singles win over St. Bonaventure’s Marco Rivolo, 6-2, 6-3. In his first singles match of the new season, Braeden Ho snagged a 6-3, 6-1 victory over Filip Rutkowski on court 4. Following Ho’s win, Tristan McCormick defeated Martin Estevarena, 6-2, 6-1, putting the Irish up 6-0. Last but not least, Andrew Mariados clinched the 7th and final point for the Irish as he beat Alejandro Arraya on court 6.
Once again, the Irish took doubles within 2 games. Guillermo Cabrera and Paul Gota started things off for Notre Dame as they quickly claimed the first doubles match of the evening. Cabrera and Gota defeated Malmberg/Rivolo on court 1, 6-1. Johnathan Small and Matthew Che stole the doubles match point as they beat Rutkowski/Blakeley, 6-2. William Howells and Conor Somers were in the lead 5-2 as they had to stop their match due to the Irish clinching 2 out of 3 doubles matches.
On court 3, Matthew Che wrapped things up quickly as he defeated Marco Rivolo in two, 6-2, 6-0. Court 5 was next to finish as Johnathan Small beat Jonni Heikkila, 6-0, 6-1, in his first singles match of the spring season. Also making his spring season debut, Conor Somers secured a 6-2, 6-4 victory on court 6 as he defeated Joseph Blakeley. Next up was Connor Fu on court 2 claiming a 6-0, 6-2 win over Martin Estevarena. With the Irish in the lead 5-0, Guillermo Cabrera brought in another win as he downed St. Bonaventure’s Lukas Linden Malmberg, 6-3, 6-3 leaving Paul Gota left on court 4. After a back and forth battle and the only match to include a third set or a tiebreaker, Gota pulled through and downed John Rutkowski, 5-7, 6-2, 1-0(6), completing the second Irish sweep of the day.
"Today was a great day for the Irish. All 14 guys took care of business and competed really hard out there," said Paul Gota. "I was the last match on at the end of a long double header day and having such great support from the home crowd and my teammates helped me cross the finish line. The boys are ready to do it again tomorrow against the Blue team from up North."
The Irish welcome No. 4 Michigan for the third and final home matchup of the weekend. The rivalry match is slated for Sunday, February 23 at 3 p.m. ET after the women’s tennis match at 11 a.m. against Virginia Tech.