ROCHESTER, Minn. – Paul Cooper (Jr./Burr Ridge, Ill./Hinsdale Central) was one of four players to prevail in both singles and doubles as the Carleton College men’s tennis team won a battle of regionally-ranked squads. The No. 10 Knights swept No. 13 Grinnell College by a 9-0 score and improved to 6-1 on the season.
The Knights, who are undefeated against non-Division I opponents, handed the Pioneers their first setback of the season.
The biggest challenges for Carleton came early in the day. At first doubles, Dan Vollman (Sr./Oak Park, Ill./Oak Park River Forest) and Andrew Hwang (Fy./Brookfield, Wis./University School) trailed 6-3 before reeling off five straight games for the win.
"Dan and Andrew continue to click as a doubles combination, even though they are at opposite ends of their college experience,” said Carleton head coach Stephan Zweifel. “One is a senior economics major who has mastered sophisticated price theory modeling, the other is a first-year student who has finally figured out how to use the soft serve ice cream machine in the dining hall.”
Carleton won the other two doubles matches by identical 8-4 margins.
The momentum from those triumphs carried over to singles where all six Knights won in straight sets and did so in rather convincing fashion.
Hwang, ranked No. 16 in the central region, posted a 6-0, 6-1 victory at first singles, while Vollman notched a 6-1, 6-1 win at the fourth spot.
After winning at second doubles, both Peter Dunn (Sr./Winnetka, Ill./North Shore Country Day) and Cooper were victorious at second and sixth singles, respectively. Dunn notched a 6-1, 6-3 score for his first singles conquest of the campaign, while Cooper succeeded 6-2 and 6-3 at the sixth slot.
Avery Rux (Fy./Austin, Texas/Home School) didn’t drop a single game in winning his match at third singles. Austin Jiang (Jr./Green Bay, Wis./Bay Port) had the other singles victory by a 6-1, 6-3 margin at fifth singles.
Jon Aranda (Sr./Los Angeles, Calif./Loyola) and McCoy Becker (So./Ojai, Calif./Thacher School) combined for the win at third doubles.
"Just like photosynthesis can turn water and carbon dioxide into chemical energy, the guys were able to turn Gatorade and chewy bars into spectacular tennis today,” Zweifel said. “If we can keep up this level of play, we should be a formidable presence in our region."
Carleton’s final pre-Spring Break match will be on Saturday, March 3 against Bethel University.