ITHACA, N.Y. - With a 4-0 win today at No. 45 Cornell, the No. 16 ranked Columbia men's tennis team has won its fifth consecutive Ivy League title.
Today's victory helps the Lions finish the regular season at 17-4 (6-1 Ivy) as Columbia shares the conference crown with Dartmouth, who also finished 6-1. This is the 15th conference championship in program history, and the 13th under the Columbia Tennis Alumni and Friends Head Coach Bid Goswami.
“I think the guys competed really well,” said Goswami. “The conditions outside were tough so we didn’t know if we would play outside or inside then we dug ourselves in a hole but came out of it. I told the team we acted like champions today. We got knocked down a little, but were able to come back and didn’t lose a point. It’s not easy to win 4-0 and is very exciting for our program.”
In a match that was moved inside after the conditions outside became too windy to play, both teams had to adjust in the middle of doubles play, with little time to warm up on the indoor courts. The Lions would fight as they have all season, as a split in the top and bottom matches meant the No. 2 doubles match would decide the point. The No. 44 ranked pair of Jack Lin and William Matheson would prevail, getting by Joseph McAllister/David Volfson, 7-5.
In singles play, Columbia took the lead in five of the six matches with a first set win, as a trio of underclassmen would seal the deal for the Lions. Rookie Austen Huang would be the first to wrap up a victory, topping Pietro Rimondini in the No. 5 slot, 6-3, 6-3. Sophomore Adam Ambrozy would be next, matching his doubles victory alongside Michal Rolski with another one in singles play over Daniel Grunberger, 6-4, 6-3, in the No. 4 match. The No. 3 match would prove to be the clincher, when Lin defeated Lev Kazakov, 7-5, 6-4.
Columbia finds out on Tuesday when the field is announced at 5:30 p.m. on NCAA.com if it will be in the top-16 in the final rankings and hosting a first round match in the NCAA Tournament or will be traveling for the first matches. This is the fifth consecutive trip to the NCAAs for the Lions, who have won at least one match in the tournament during three of the previous four seasons.
"We have been ranked as high as No. 5 during the season, which can be scary," said Goswami. "I knew had a good team, but you never really know how good we can be. We did our part all season long, we had to be tough, hungry, and buy in, and the boys came through and were clutch when they needed to be."
No. 16 Columbia 4, No. 45 Cornell 0
Doubles (Order of Finish: 1-3-2)
1) Ayeni/Kazakov def. No. 29 Pham/Tang, 6-3
2) No. 44 Lin/Matheson def. McAllister/Volfson, 7-5
3) Ambrozy/Rolski def. Grunberger/Hansen, 7-5
Singles (Order of Finish: 5-4-3)
1) No. 23 Victor Pham unf. David Volfson, 6-7 (2), 3-1
2) No. 53 Jackie Tang unf. Alafia Ayeni, 7-5, 2-6, 0-0
3) Jack Lin def. Lev Kazakov, 7-5, 6-4
4) Adam Ambrozy def. Daniel Grunberger, 6-4, 6-3
5) Austen Huang def. Pietro Rimondini, 6-3, 6-3
6) Timothy Wang unf. Jake Hansen, 6-4, 3-4