#65 Bears Stay Alive in Hunt for Ivy Title with 4-3 Win over #69 Harvard

April 23, 2006

PROVIDENCE, RI - The 65th-ranked Brown men's tennis team (18-9, 5-1) kept its chance for a second straight Ivy League title alive on Sunday afternoon with a 4-3 victory over #69 Harvard at the Pizzitola Center Courts. The Bears fell behind 1-0 after dropping the doubles point, but posted wins in four of the six singles matches to edge the Crimson.

By virtue of its 5-2 victory over Columbia this afternoon, Penn has clinched at least a share of the 2006 Ivy Title. Brown stands in second with a 5-1 record, its only loss against the Quakers. #66 Yale, which faces the Bears on Wednesday afternoon in Providence, is right behind Brown in third with a 4-2 mark. A Brown victory over the Bulldogs on Wednesday would give Brown a share of the 2006 Title, its second title in as many years, and third in the past five years.

The match was close throughout, with the three doubles matches coming down to the wire. Harvard won at #2 doubles, 8-6 with both #1 and #3 knotted at 8-8 and in a tiebreaker. The Crimson picked up the early 1-0 lead with a 7-5 win in the tiebreaker at #3 doubles. Senior Phil Charm (Concord, MA) and freshman Chris Lee (Sudbury, MA) helped to give the Bears some momentum heading into singles action, winning their tiebreaker at #1 doubles, 10-8 for the Bears' only win in doubles action.

Brown came out on fire in singles action, as junior Dan Hanegby (Herzliya, Israel) stormed to a 6-1 first-set win at #1 singles. Over on court #3, junior Eric Thomas (Cincinnati, OH) posted a 6-2 victory in his first set. Thomas then won his second set, 6-4, to tie the match at 1-1.

Hanegby then dropped his next two sets, including the second in a tiebreaker, as the Crimson went up 2-1.

Freshman Basu Ratnam (Oyster Bay, NY) won a marathon match at #2 singles to tie the match at 2-2. After losing his first set, 6-4, and falling behind by scores of 3-1, 4-2, and 5-3 in the second set, he won four straight games to earn a 7-5 victory and force a third set. With the score 5-4 in favor of Ratnam, and with Harvard serving, Ratnam won four straight points to close out the game and his match, tying the match score at 2-2.

Sophomore Saurabh Kohli (Colaba, Mumbai, India) gave the Bears their first lead of the match, 3-2, with a straight-set win at #4 singles. After winning, 6-3 in the first set, neither Kohli or his opponent were able to break one another as the set headed into a tiebreaker, which Kohli won, 7-3, to give Brown the lead.

Senior Luke Tedaldi (West Newton, MA) clinched the victory for the Bears with a dominating 6-2, 6-2 win at #6 singles, including holding his opponent at love to go ahead 5-2 in the second set. He then broke serve to clinch the match for Brown.

#65 Brown faces #66 Yale in a critical battle on Wednesday afternoon at 2:00 p.m. in Providence.

#65 Brown 4, #69 Harvard 3
Doubles
#1 Charm/Lee (B) def. Kumar/Ermakov (H) 9-8 (8)
#2 Danenberg/Valkin (H) def. Hanegby/Kohli (B) 8-6
#3 Chiu/Savage (H) def. Thomas/Garland (B) 9-8 (5)

Singles
#1 Kumar (H) def. Hanegby (B) 1-6, 7-6 (5), 6-4
#2 Ratnam (B) def. Clayton (H) 4-6, 7-5, 6-4
#3 Thomas (B) def. Nguyen (H) 6-2, 6-4
#4 Kohli (B) def. Ermakov (H) 6-3, 7-6 (3)
#5 Chiu (H) def. Lee (B) 7-6 (2), 6-4
#6 Tedaldi (B) def. Wan (H) 6-2, 6-2