After falling to a talented Virginia Tech squad on the road last Friday, Boston College men’s tennis returned to action closer to home Sunday afternoon at Harvard. The match proved to be a test of grit for the Eagles, as the Crimson are ranked No. 44 in the nation and were ready to pounce on a weary Eagles, following their lopsided loss in Blacksburg.
Harvard (12-5), which boasts a strong record and number one doubles team, consisting of Logan Weber and Andy Zhou, that entered the afternoon ranked 33rd nationally as a pair, clearly had the upper hand on paper. Surprisingly, Weber and Zhou went down, but BC was unable to win the doubles point and eventually walked away with a 6-1 defeat.
The Eagles (5-12, 0-8 Atlantic Coast) were competitive throughout, as BC’s duo of Derek Austin and Conor Mullins bested the talented pair of Logan Weber and Andy Zhou, 6-3. The Eagles challenged Harvard early, as BC’s Chris Grasel and Markus Nordby had the opportunity to win the doubles point, but the Crimson’s Robert Wrzesinski and Brian Shi defeated them to give Harvard the lead.
Austin largely led the charge for the Eagles, as he seemed to build off the previous doubles victory over Weber and Zhou. Austin dropped the opening set, 6-4, to Wrzesinski, but battled back in the second, ultimately claiming the frame, 7-6. Unfortunately for BC, Austin came up short in a nailbiter of a third set tiebreaker, 7-6. Chris Grasel’s singles match against Harvard’s Zhou also reached a third set, but it had a similar fate, and the Crimson ended up notching a victory in the number two singles spot.
BC’s only point on the rainy Sunday afternoon in Cambridge resulted from Conor Mullins’ dominant singles performance in the number five spot against Harvard’s Lane Leschly, defeating him 6-1 and 6-4 in two straight sets.
Despite their recent three-game losing streak, the breakdown of each doubles and singles performance reveals BC’s resilience. Austin and Conor Mullins proved to the rest of the Eagles team on Sunday that a formidable opponent can be met with top-notch competition, and that, even with a shaky record, BC is capable of hanging around with ranked opponents.
Featured Image by Delaney Vorwick / For The Heights