Men’s Tennis: ‘Nova defeats Connecticut in first round, drops to eventual champion Irish in second

Jamie Augustinsky

The men’s tennis team took part in the Big East Championship this past weekend in Tampa, Fla. The team began tournament action on the afternoon of April 18 with a play-in game against the No. 9-seeded UConn Huskies. The Wildcats, who were the No. 8 seed, defeated the Huskies 4-2 to advance to tournament play.

The ‘Cats were the first to score in the match against the Huskies, earning the doubles point by winning the No. 2 and No. 3 matches. The pair of freshmen John Drosick and Trenton Alenik was the first to gain a victory for the Wildcats, while the pair of sophomore Alex Leeser and freshman David Shaheen won the third match to secure the doubles point.

After taking the point in the doubles matchups, Villanova then needed three singles victories to advance to tournament play. Junior Brian Maher was the first Wildcat to win his singles match. Alenik then followed by posting a win over UConn’s Ben Schueler. The freshman won his match by a score of 6-7 (4), 6-1, 6-0. Sheehan was next, and he fought hard throughout his entire match to earn a come-from-behind win and secure the ‘Cats’ play in the tournament the following day.

On April 19, the team competed in an early morning matchup against top-seeded Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish, who went on to win the Big East Championship, shut out the Wildcats in a 4-0 victory. The final three legs of the match did not need to be completed. The final competition for the ‘Cats came later that day but yielded the same result. Villanova took on No. 4-seeded Marquette and lost by a score of 4-0. — J.A.