After dropping a heartbreaking 4-3 decision to Vanderbilt last season, Northwestern (0-2) seemed primed to produce perhaps better results this year. Unfortunately, a missed opportunity in doubles play undermined the Wildcats chance to earn their first win of the season, as the Commodores stormed to a 5-2 win.
Vanderbilt prolonged Northwestern’s doubles woes to begin the season by coming from behind to take the doubles point. Northwestern’s Simen Bratholm and Nick Brookes defeated Maxwell Freeman and Cameron Klinger, but Antonioni Fasano and Ben Vandixhorn of the Wildcats fell to George Harwell and Billy Rowe. Up 5-3 in their on court two, Chris Ephron and Dominik Stary lost their break and eventually the math to Panu Virtanen and Christiaan Worst by a 6-7 scoreline.
The Commodores jumped out the gun quickly to begin singles play. On court one, Brookes was overwhelmed against Cameron Klinger, dropping both sets 2-6, 4-6. Rowe continued Vanderbilt’s stellar play with a 6-3, 6-3 victory against Ephron, while Harwell clinched Vanderbilt’s victory with a 7-6, 6-4 win.
Northwestern received wins from Stary, who defeated Freeman 4-6, 6-1, 6-0 for his second straight singles win, as well as Trice Pickens, who picked up his first win of the young season with an 8-4 super set victory over Worst. Vanderbilt eventually won the match 5-2.
The ‘Cats will continue their season against North Carolina State on Jan. 20 at 12 p.m.