(PITTSBURGH, Pa.) - The Carnegie Mellon University men's tennis team prepared for the upcoming ITA Southeast Regional with a home invitational against Duquesne University on Friday, September 21 and Saturday, September 22. The Tartans won 25 of 35 matches for the weekend with senior Chaz Downing (Newport Beach, Calif. / Corona Del Mar), senior Vayum Arora (Fremont, Calif. / Mission San Jose) and sophomore Ray Boppana (Boxborough, Mass. / Acton Boxborough Regional) leading the group with four wins apiece.
Downing won two singles match and two doubles matches for the weekend pairing with senior Daniel Levine (Highland Park, Ill. / Boca Prep International School), who also went undefeated for the weekend, in doubles. The senior pair defeated senior Chris Corrao and sophomore Alex Mascioli 8-2 on Friday before winning by an 8-4 score on Saturday against junior Jared Isaacs and Mascioli. Downing's singles wins came against Isaacs, 6-1, 7-6 (7-2), and Corrao, 6-3, 7-5. Levine picked up a singles win on Saturday against Isaacs, 6-3, 6-3.
Boppana also earned four wins, all coming on Saturday. Boppana paired with senior Nicholas Calzolano (Hinsdale, Ill. / Hinsdale Central) to win 8-7 (7-1) against Corrao and senior Dane Bendel before defeating Corrao and freshman Graham Conron, 6-1. Boppana picked up a 6-1, 6-4 victory against Bendel and a 7-6 (7-4), 2-6, 1-0 (10-7) win against sophomore Joey Matthews.
Arora earned four victories while also falling once in doubles competition. Arora paired with first year Tartan Yannick Bloem (Geneva, Switzerland / EPFL, Lausanne) to win 8-2 on Saturday while he earned an 8-7 (7-1) win with Calzolano on Friday. Arora's singles victories came against freshman Jari Hahnimaki, 6-3, 6-4, and sophomore Alejandro Rodriguez-Vidal, 6-4, 6-1.
The Tartans will next travel to the ITA Southeast Regional tournament hosted by the University of Mary Washington on Saturday, September 29 through Monday, October 1.
Quoting head coach Mike Belmonte
On overall thoughts to the weekend:
"I was looking forward all week to seeing the whole team compete at home against a strong D1 opponent, and I was not disappointed with the effort the guys displayed. After our strong finish last season, we set the expectations very high coming into this year, and now that I've seen everyone competing side-by-side for the first time I can say the expectation has only grown. This is the best we've played against Duquesne in quite awhile, and I think it proves we are growing in the ways we've been talking about for some time. I'm even more excited to go down to Virginia next weekend to see how we compete against our top regional Division III competition."