Men’s Tennis Hosts Villanova Invitational


Courtesy of Villanova Athletics

Head coach Brad Adams also described the leadership of Josh Robinson as “excellent.”

Elijah McDow, Staff Writer

Villanova men’s tennis started its season at home as hosts of the annual Villanova Invitational. The Invitational, which started back in 2011, is a three-day tournament that typically lasts from Friday through Sunday. Teams from across the region came to Villanova for a weekend of tennis. These teams included Lehigh, Saint Joseph’s, Bucknell, Colgate and Lafayette.

“It was about getting our players back into shape,” head coach Brad Adams said about the goals for the weekend. “A lot of our guys had internships or were working during the summer.” As he further stated, his message to the team on Friday was “Improve every day. Improve with every game, point, and match.” 

The Wildcats did very well on day one of the tournament. In the blue draw they went for a combined record of 7-2. Adams was especially proud of two freshmen, Tighe Brunetti and Cooper Gordan, who got a doubles win against Colgate’s Aidan Lee and Josh Israel. In singles, Lee defeated Brunetti, 6-3, 6-1, but Gordan defeated Israel, 7-5, 6-3.

According to Adams, “Cooper was fighting through an injury, but he really locked it up and was able to get through his match.”

In addition to being proud of the freshmen, Adams also described the leadership of Josh Robinson as “excellent.” Robinson and sophomore Trey Fourticq were also in the blue draw where they defeated Lafayette’s Brady Wisdom and Connor McLeod 6-3 in doubles. Robinson then won his singles match, defeating Wisdom, 6-0, 6-4, while Fourticq defeated McLeod in a tie breaker, 9-8 (4). To cap off the first day of the blue draw, Lafayette’s Arman Ganchi and Nick McKenzie defeated Villanova’s Ryan Nguyen and Justin Suarez 7-6 in doubles play. After losing in doubles, Nguyen defeated Ganchi, 6-3, 5-7, 10-6. Suarez also won his singles match defeating McKenzie, 6-2, 6-4.

Success also continued for the Wildcats on the white side of the draw. Junior Noah Winton and senior William Gatti had a bye. While Lukas Choi and Kim lost their doubles match 6-4, they both won their singles matches. Kim defeated Lafayette’s William Woolley, 6-1, 6-0, and Choi defeated Lafayette’s Sam Gelber, 6-3, 6-3, seeing the Wildcats advance in the white bracket.

On day two the results of the Wildcats first few matches were mixed. In the blue draw, Brunetti and Gordan lost in doubles to Leheigh’s Matt Kleinman and Jeremy Learner. In singles, Kleiman defeated Brunetti 8-2, while Learner defeated Gordan, 6-1, 6-4. In match two, Robinson and Fourticq defeated Leheigh’s Max Litton and Tejas Gupta in 7-6 (2) tiebreaker.  Robinson also defeated Litton in singles 9-8 (5) after going to another tiebreaker. Fourticq defeated Tejas Gupta, 6-1, 6-2. In the following match, the Wildcats had some struggles when Suarez and Nyguen lost to Lehigh’s Marc Bleckman and Jason Morash 6-3. In singles, Bleckman defeated Nguyen 8-6, while Morash defeated Suarez, 6-1, 6-0. 

Day two of the white bracket saw Winton and Gatti defeat Bucknell’s Michael Owen and Gui Padhilla, 6-2. Winton played Owen in singles, but the results were released as “unfinished” at 8-5. Gatti defeated Padhilla in singles by a score of 6-0, 6-0. To finish the white bracket, Kim and Choi defeated Colgate’s Michael Weitz and John Fazli, 6-2. Kim defeated Weitz, 6-1, 6-3, and Choi defeated John Fazli, 6-2, 6-3.

Day three of the tournament was canceled due to inclement weather. 

In the abbreviated results, Brunetti and Gordan advanced in the blue draw. Before play was officially canceled, Brunetti and Gordan played tiebreaker against their scheduled opponents. They beat Litton and Gupta of Colgate in doubles 7-5. Brunetti lost to Litton 8-6 in singles, but Gordan won over Gupta in singles 8-6.

Robinson and Fourticq lost their doubles match against Lehigh’s Kleiman and Learner. The score was 6-4. Robinson also lost his singles match to Kleiman, 6-4, 3-6, 10-7. By the time Fourticq was scheduled to play Learner, it was raining too hard, making it too dangerous to continue play. Nguyen and Suarez saw their match canceled as well. 

Villanova’s matches were able to begin and conclude before the remainder of play was canceled. Gatti and Winton beat Lehigh’s Michael Bukhalo and Wyeth Anzilotti in doubles by a score of 6-3. Despite good doubles performances, Winton lost to Bukhalo in singles 6-4, 6-3.. Gatti also lost his match to Anzilotti 6-3, 6-1.  

In the final matches, Kim and Choi lost in doubles to Ben Graham and Aidan Chung of Colgate 6-4. The singles match between Kim and Graham went to a tie breaker which Graham won, 6-3, 5-7, 12-10. Choi played Chung in singles but was forced off after getting injured during the third set. 

While not getting to play the full three days was disappointing, Adams was happy with the results of the weekend.

“We were lucky enough to get three rounds in, so all our guys got to play three matches, which is a full weekend,” Adams said. “As far as it affects us going forward, it doesn’t impact us that much going into Saint Joseph’s.” 

Although the tournament was cut short, two and a half days was still enough time for Adams to evaluate his team. As of right now there are no plans to make up the portion of day three that was canceled. The next time the Wildcats will take the court is on September 23rd at the Saint Joseph’s invitational. Until then, the team will continue to prepare, while following Brad Adams message to “Improve every day.”