Coming off doubleheader wins last weekend over Green Bay and Butler, the Purdue men’s tennis team finds itself on a four-game win streak with an above-.500 record after pulling out a last-match win over Drake 4-3 and sweeping IUPUI 7-0.
Against Drake, the Boilers lost the doubles match, with sophomore Stephan Koenigsfest and freshman Maksymilian Raupuk losing 6-3 and senior Renan Hanayama and junior Dominik Sochurek falling in a tiebreak, 7-6 (7-3).
Senior Gergely Madarasz and sophomore Athell Bennett went unfinished in their doubles match against Drake’s Vinny Gillespie and Barny Thorold. The No. 44 ranked pair was in a tiebreak, up 6-6 (5-2) when the match was called.
In singles, freshman Mateo Julio easily beat Drake’s Finley Hall at the fifth spot (6-4, 6-4) and Bennett, at the sixth spot, pulled out a two-set win over Ben Wood, squeaking past him 7-5, 7-6 (7-3).
With the Bulldogs just one singles win away from taking the match, up 3-2 overall, the Boilers secured the match by getting two wins, one from its veteran leader and one from its freshman star.
Madarasz, at the first spot, again faced Gillespie, this time playing an long singles match after almost winning the doubles.
Madarasz and Raupuk edged out wins, with the senior finishing 7-6 (7-3), 5-7, 6-4 with five break points and 12 held serves, and Raupuk ending 4-6, 7-6 (10-8), 6-4 over Thorold. Raupuk’s win came after he questioned his opponent’s call, and the chair umpire ruled in the Boilermakers’ favor.
The freshman further explained the call and point penalty Thorold was given — a rule which many fans may not know unless they follow college tennis religiously.
“It was 30-40 for (Thorold), and I played serve,” Raupuk said. “He called it out, the ball was good, so it’s overruled and given a point penalty, so I won 6-4.”
Thorold previously had two calls overruled by the chair umpire prior to the final point. According to the Intercollegiate Tennis Association rulebook, rule 1.G.13.s states that a “player who has been overruled twice shall thereafter be penalized under the Point Penalty System. If a Chair Umpire and/or Roving Umpire has overruled a player or doubles team twice, the Umpire shall penalize each subsequent overrule under the ITA Point Penalty System.”
“I think this win is huge for us,” Madarasz said following the Drake match, “because we were struggling in the beginning of the season. Many freshmen had a couple tough losses, but this can be a turning point for the team because some freshmen won, and some clinched, so it’s going to be really positive.”
Raupuk, playing next to Madarasz at the three spot, saw his teammate winning late in the third set and knew he needed to do everything he could to win for the team.
“In the third set, I was looking at (Madarasz), who was 0-3 down,” Raupuk said, “so I was like, ‘Oh my match isn’t gonna matter.’ But then I saw he won so I thought, ‘Come on, Maks. Let’s go, let’s go!’”
At night against IUPUI, Purdue won the doubles and swept the singles matches to extend its four-game win streak.
The Boilers will head west to Indian Wells, California, to compete in the prestigious BNP Paribas Open Collegiate Tennis Challenge. The 11-team tournament features five ranked teams, including No. 11 Southern California, No. 13 Arizona State, No. 32 Baylor, No. 37 Loyola Marymount and No. 48 BYU.