Bears Upset #57 Columbia, 4-3

April 11, 2009

NEW YORK, NY - The Brown men's tennis team (17-7, 3-0) won its third straight Ivy match on Friday afternoon, upsetting #57 Columbia, 4-3, in a huge battle. The Bears won the doubles point and then took a 3-1 lead in the match. However, the Lions battled back with two wins to tie the match at 3-3 and set up the deciding match a #1 singles, which went to a tiebreaker.

The Bears started off by taking the doubles point, as sophomores Kendrick Au (St. John's, NF) and Charlie Posner (Cambridge, MA) cruised to an 8-1 win. Seniors Sam Garland (Bradenton, FL) and Noah Gardner (Cambridge, MA) then dropped an 8-6 decision to #1 doubles, setting up the deciding match at #2. Both senior Chris Lee (Sudbury, MA) and sophomore Jonathan Pearlman (New York, NY), ranked #55 in the country, and their opponents remained on serve through 7-7, and then down the stretch, as the match moved into a tiebreak. Brown claimed the tiebreaker, 7-5, to earn the critical point and go up, 1-0, in the match.

The Lions tied the score at 1-1 with a win at #3 singles, but Brown won the next two matched off the court to grab a 3-1 lead. Gardner claimed a 7-6 (6), 6-3 win at #6 singles and then Garland earned a 7-5, 7-6 (2) win at #4 singles, as the Bears came within one point of winning the match.

However, Columbia battled back and took a 6-4, 7-6 (5) decision at #5 singles to come to within 3-2. On courts #1 and #2, both in a third set, Lee was up, 5-1, in the third at #1 and Pearlman was down, 5-1, in the third. Pearlman eventually lost his third set, 6-1, as Columbia tied the match, setting up the deciding match.

Lee's opponent clawed his way back into the match and went ahead, 6-5. With the match on the line, Lee held serve to tie the match, 6-6, and force a tiebreaker. Lee went ahead, 6-3, in the tiebreaker, before his opponent battled back again to come to within, 6-5. Lee won the match when his opponent sent a shot long, to give Brown the 4-3 win.

Brown 4, #57 Columbia 3
Doubles
#1 Borta/Nichifor (C) def. Gardner/Garland (B) 8-6
#2 (#55) Lee/Pearlman (B) def. Schneiderman/Jonathan Wong (C) 9-8 (5)
#3 Au/Charlie Posner (B) def. Deb-Sen/Dan Urban (C) 8-1
Order of finish: 3,1,2
Singles
#1 Chris Lee (B) def. Bogdan Borta (C) 2-6, 6-2, 7-6 (5)
#2 Mihai Nichifor (C) def. Jonathan Pearlman (B) 5-7, 6-2, 6-1
#3 Ekin Sezgen (C) def. Nathaniel Gorham (B) 6-0, 6-2
#4 Sam Garland (B) def. Haig Schneiderman (C) 7-5, 7-6 (2)
#5 Rajeev Deb-Sen (C) def. Kendrick Au (B) 6-4, 7-6 (5)
#6 Noah Gardner (B) def. Sho Mastumoto (C) 7-6 (6), 6-3
Order of finish: 3,6,3,5,2,1