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Men’s tennis: No. 1 Ohio State sweeps the No. 4 Sooners

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Ohio State junior Hugo Di Feo returns a volley during a match against Oklahoma on March 6. Credit: Courtesy of Anne Hohler

The No. 1 Ohio State men’s tennis team shut out the No. 4 Oklahoma Sooners 4-0 on Sunday at the Varsity Tennis Center, thanks to the doubles point and single points from junior Mikael Torpegaard, sophomore Martin Joyce and sophomore Kyle Seelig.

In its fifth matchup with a top-5 opponent this season, OSU improved to 16-1 overall. After falling to the Buckeyes, the Sooners dropped to 10-3 overall.

In the doubles matches, Torpegaard and senior Herkko Pollanen were upset by Florin Bragusi and Spencer Papa of the Sooners to start things off. Next, OSU junior Matt Mendez and sophomore Hunter Tubert defeated Jochen Bertsch and Mason Bridegan.

In the final doubles match, OSU junior Hugo Di Feo and Joyce went to a tiebreaking set against Oklahoma’s Adrian Oetzbach and Alex Ghilea, in which the Buckeyes prevailed 7-3.

With Di Feo and Joyce’s win, the home team got the doubles point and went up 1-0. This marked the first doubles point for the Buckeyes in their last four matches.

“We wanted the doubles point” Di Feo said. “In college tennis, the double point is huge and once we got that the guys focused and knew we had to come out strong in the singles.”

OSU dominated in singles play, winning the first set on every court except for Court Two, which was lost in a tiebreaker. Torpegaard, Di Feo, Pollanen, Joyce and Seelig each went into their second set up one.

Joyce won his second set 6-2 and Seelig won his 6-4 to shut out their opponents and put OSU up 3-0.

The No. 1 singles player in the country, Torpegaard, was pushed to a first-set tiebreaker, which he won 8-6. Torpegaard quickly went up 4-0 in the second set and won 6-1 to get the fourth point and secure the Buckeye victory.

“It’s all the same pressure,” OSU coach Ty Tucker said. “You want to get the four before the other team gets the four and that’s the way it goes.”

This is the second victory over Oklahoma for top-ranked OSU this season, as they already defeated the Sooners in a sweep once this season in the round of 16 at the ITA National Indoor Championships.

Two years ago, the Sooners broke OSU’s 202 home-match winning streak, making them the only team to beat the Buckeyes on home turf in 14 years.

“I think it’s a little special with that, being able to get the win against Oklahoma today due to the fact that they’re the team that broke our streak,” Tucker said. “Other than that, every win is a good win and we try to play as tough a schedule as we can play.”

Next up

OSU will travel to Austin, Texas, for another top-10 battle with the No. 8 Longhorns on Wednesday.

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