Notre Dame men’s tennis traveled down south to Fort Worth, Texas to compete in the ITA Kick-Off Weekend hosted by TCU. Irish were looking for their third straight Kick-Off Weekend win to punch their ticket to the ITA National Indoor Championships. Unfortunately, ND fell short in its first matchup with Arizona, 4-2 but were able to clinch the consolation title over FAU with a clean sweep.
ROUND 1: vs. ARIZONA
Irish started off on the right foot when they claimed the doubles point thanks to the doubles pairings Tristan McCormick/Axel Nefve and Richard Ciamarra/Matt Gamble. McCormick/Nefve were the first duo to finish in doubles play after defeating Arizona’s Carlos Hassey/Jonas Ziverts in a quick 6-3 victory. Ciamarra/Gamble were the second doubles match to finish, but not as quick and easy as the first. It was an extremely difficult and hard-fought match on both sides but the Irish duo were able to power through and defeat Igor Karpovets/Filip Malbasic, 7-6(7-5). The final doubles match played by Guillermo Cabrera/William Howells and Arizona’s Alejandro Reguant/Nick Lagaev was unfinished due to the Irish already winning 2 out of the 3 doubles matchups.
As the Irish headed into singles play, it appeared their luck started to taper off. On court 1, No. 5 Richard Ciamarra and No. 61 Jonas Ziverts battled it out until Ziverts quickly took the match, 6-2, 6-1. At this time, the score was tied 1-1 between Arizona and ND. Matt Gamble followed suit after dropping his court 5 match to Carlos Hassey, 6-4, 6-3. With Arizona now in the lead by 1, William Howells challenged Igor Karpovets on court four. Howells ultimately prevailed over Karpovets, 6-4, 6-3, to tie things up once again with Arizona, 2-2. The next showdown to finish was Connor Fu and Nick Lagaev after Fu dropped, 6-4, 7-5, to his Arizona competitor. It all came down to the final two singles matches with No. 102 Axel Nefve and No. 36 Filip Malbasic, and Tristan McCormick and Alejandro Reguant with Arizona in the lead, 3-2. Unfortunately, Nefve fell to Malbasic in two sets, 6-4, 6-4, resulting in Arizona’s 4-2 victory.
CONSOLATION TITLE MATCH: vs. FAU
Although ND dropped to Arizona in the first round, the Irish had a chance to battle it out in the consolation title match with FAU after the Owls fell to No. 10 ranked TCU.
It was doubles deja vu for ND as Richard Ciamarra/Matt Gamble finished their doubles match with a victory, this time over FAU’s Jason Legall/Yovan Lambros as the Irish pair prevented the opponents from earning even a single game point within the matchup. Tristan McCormick/Axel Nefve were the second to finish, clinching ND the doubles point after defeating Maxime Lapraille/Filip Krolo, 6-3. Once again, William Howells was unable to finish his doubles match, this time paired with Matthew Che, after the Irish claimed 2 out of 3 doubles matches.
Although Howells was unable to finish any doubles match, he was able to secure his second singles victory of the weekend as he beat Gerard Escandell, 6-1, 6-3. Next up to finish with a win was Connor Fu as he defeated his FAU compeititor, Yovan Lambros, 7-5, 6-1. At this point in time, the Irish were up 3-0, only needing one more point to clinch the consolation title at the ITA Kick-Off Weekend. Finally, No. 102 Axel Nefve pulled through with the last victory after beating the No. 58 Maxime Lapraille ranked player, 7-5, 6-1, enabling the Irish to pull out a clean sweep over the Owls. The consolation victory was the redemption the Irish sought after falling in the first round.
Notre Dame returns to Indiana this weekend as they travel to the University of Indiana for its second consecutive road-matchup on Saturday, February 1 at 3 p.m. ET. The Irish are scheduled for 2 more road-battles after Indiana before returning home to host their rival, Michigan, on February 15 at 2 p.m. ET.
Arizona 4, Notre Dame 2
1. #61 Jonas Ziverts (ARIZ) def. #5 RICHARD CIAMARRA (ND) 6-2, 6-1
2. #36 Filip Malbasic (ARIZ) def. #102 AXEL NEFVE (ND) 6-4, 6-4
3. TRISTAN MCCORMICK (ND) vs. #86 Alejandro Reguant (ARIZ) 6-3, 4-6, unfinished
4. WILLIAM HOWELLS (ND) def. Igor Karpovets (ARIZ) 6-4, 6-3
5. Carlos Hassey (ARIZ) def. MATT GAMBLE (ND) 6-4, 6-3
6. Nick Lagaev (ARIZ) def. CONNOR FU (ND) 6-4, 7-5
1. TRISTAN MCCORMICK/AXEL NEFVE (ND) def. Carlos Hassey/Jonas Ziverts (ARIZ) 6-3
2. RICHARD CIAMARRA/MATT GAMBLE (ND) def. Igor Karpovets/Filip Malbasic (ARIZ) 7-6 (7-5)
3. Alejandro Reguant/Nick Lagaev (ARIZ) vs. GUILLERMO CABRERA/WILLIAM HOWELLS (ND) no result
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2); Singles (1,5,4,6,2)
NOTRE DAME 4, Florida Atlantic 0
1. #5 RICHARD CIAMARRA (ND) vs. Jason Legall (FAU) 6-2, 2-6, 4-2, unfinished
2. #102 AXEL NEFVE (ND) def. #58 Maxime Lapraille (FAU) 7-5, 6-1
3. TRISTAN MCCORMICK (ND) vs. A. Fernandez Horta (FAU) 7-6 (0-3), 4-4, unfinished
4. WILLIAM HOWELLS (ND) def. Gerard Escandell (FAU) 6-1, 6-3
5. MATT GAMBLE (ND) vs. Filip Krolo (FAU) 4-6, 4-4, unfinished
6. CONNOR FU (ND) def. Yovan Lambros (FAU) 7-5, 6-1
1. TRISTAN MCCORMICK/AXEL NEFVE (ND) def. Maxime Lapraille/Filip Krolo (FAU) 6-3
2. RICHARD CIAMARRA/MATT GAMBLE (ND) def. Jason Legall/Yovan Lambros (FAU) 6-0
3. MATTHEW CHE/WILLIAM HOWELLS (ND) vs. A. Fernandez Horta/Gerard Escandell (FAU) 4-4, unfinished
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1); Singles (4,6,2)