Winning the doubles point has also not been easy for Penn this year, dropping number 11 on the season to the Red Storm. Gaining the momentum back after the doubles loss seemed even more difficult as the usual cheers were much quieter than in past matches.
An ankle injury to the usual No. 1 contender, senior co-captain Nikola Kocovic, forced the Quakers to regroup and adjust the lineup. Sophomore Vim De Alwis took over at No. 1 but had to retire during the second set, due to an ankle injury.
A bright spot for the Red and Blue was seeing sophomore Blaine Willenborg back in the lineup. Despite his loss at the No. 3 slot, Willenborg was finally able to see some action on the courts and will hopefully find his rhythm again, after being out for two months.
Earning the first point for the Red and Blue, senior co-captain Zach Katz played with fire and quickly downed his opponent Freddy Ruiz Acevedo at the No. 5 spot (6-1, 6-2).
Even though St. John’s locked up the overall victory, junior Jeremy Court and Lucas Hejhal duked it out in a final tiebreaker. With all eyes watching the two didn’t disappoint, fighting for every point. In the end it was Court who came out with the win (10-6).
If Penn can fight off its injuries and stay positive, the Quakers have a chance at giving the Tigers a run for their money on Saturday in the Ivy rival showdown.
No. 1 Erick Reyes (SJ) def. Vim De Alwis (Penn) 6-1, 1-0 ret.
No. 2 Jeremy Court (Penn) def. Lucas Hejhal (SJ) 6-4, 4-6, 10-6
No. 3 Vaidik Munshaw (SJ) def. Blaine Willenborg (Penn) 6-0, 6-1
No. 4 Robert Livi (SF) def. Matt Nardella (Penn) 6-3, 6-2
No. 5 Zach Katz (Penn) def. Freddy Ruiz Acevedo (SJ) 6-1, 6-2
No. 6 Michael-John Every (SJ) def. Marshall Sharp (Penn) 6-4, 6-3