State of men's tennis unclear after mixed weekend
    In many ways, a non-conference schedule is a time to be challenged and identify weaknesses. This weekend was a wake-up call for Northwestern Men’s Tennis. This past weekend, Northwestern faced off against a trifecta of opponents, as the Cats played in Stillwater, Oklahoma against #9 Oklahoma St. on Friday and welcomed #22 Notre Dame and Chicago St. to Evanston for a Sunday doubleheader. Northwestern (3-5) came close to defeating #9 Oklahoma State (7-0) before falling in the last two singles matches but suffered 5 singles losses in a row to against Notre Dame (7-0) after winning the doubles set. The ‘Cats then swiftly defeated Chicago State 4-0 to avoid a sweep.

    In Stillwater, the Cowboys began the doubles set with a quick victory in #1 singles when Julian Cash and Luke Hammond beat Ben Vandixhorn and Dominik Stary by the score of 6-3. The ‘Cats responded as Chris Ephron and Antonioni Fasano defeated Brady Draheim and Jurence Mendoza by a 6-4 score to tie the the doubles match. The Cowboys pulled out the victory when Eleftherios Theodorou and Artur Dubinski beat Nick Brookes and Michael Lorenzini with a 7-5 victory.

    After the Sooners took a commanding 3-0 overall lead in #6 and #1 singles, Brookes once again pulled the team up, beating Tristan Meraut by a 6-4, 7-6 score to pull the Wildcats within 2. Brookes has still only lost one singles match all year, continuing his impressive start to the season. Vandixhorn pulled off a surprise victory in #4 singles, beating #55 Mathieu Scaglia 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 to make it a 1 point game. #94 Artur Dubinski ended the contest by beating Dominik Stary 6-4, 7-6 to give the Cowboys a 4-2 victory.

    Against Notre Dame, the ‘Cats began on a high note, winning the doubles set as Vandixhorn and Stary beat Brendon Kempin and Tristan McCormick, 7-5, and Brookes and Lorenzini beat William Howells and Alex Lebedev, 6-4. The Fighting Irish responded by dominating the singles matches, earning straight set wins in #1, #3, #5 and #6 singles. Grayson Broadus finished the match for the Irish with a 6-4, 6-4 win against AJ Joshi in #6 singles.

    The ‘Cats made light work of Chicago St., capping off the weekend with a 4-0 victory. The Cougars entered the match only fielding five players, so the game was shortened by one singles match and one doubles match. Northwestern only gave up one game entirely in doubles; Stary and Vandixhorn won #1 doubles 6-1 over Felix Savard and Christian Gonzalez, and Antonioni Fasano and Jason Seidman shut out George Botta and Rohan Wattley 6-0. In singles, Vandixhorn won a quick 6-2, 6-0 victory over Botha, and AJ Joshi finished the rout with an emphatic 6-1, 6-0 victory over Cody Wurzelbacher.

    Northwestern returns to Combe Tennis Center next Sunday with another doubleheader, with games against Louisville at 11 a.m. and IUPUI at 5 p.m.


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