The last time the Red and Blue defeated the Tigers was on the road in 2007 with a 5-2 decision. This time around, play stopped almost immediately once Penn clinched the victory with a win at the No. 6 spot.
Head Coach David Geatz knew his team was capable of defeating Princeton, which made the victory all the more sweet.
“This was our best win since I have been here,” said Geatz. “And it was over a good nationally ranked team.”
All of the athletes on the courts put everything on the line; they knew what was at stake.
The Quakers quickly gained the momentum with strong performances in the doubles matches. First to finish were the pairs at No. 2, as senior co-captain Zach Katz served the winning point. Katz and teammate Jeremy Court celebrated the 8-4 win and more cheers shortly followed, as senior co-captain Nikola Kocovic sealed the second victory at the No. 1 spot with freshman Matt Nardella, 8-5. The No. 3 doubles ended play and the Red and Blue began preparing for the singles matches as cheers exploded around the pavilion.
But the Tigers weren’t going down without a fight.
At the No. 1 spot, Kocovic struggled to find his rhythm, dropping the first set, 6-1. He bounced back to take the second set, 6-3, but Tiger Zack McCourt took the win with the third set victory, 6-3.
It was the only point Princeton earned, as Katz put the lead back in favor of the Red and Blue with his win over Tiger Alexander Day at the No. 4 spot (6-4, 6-3).
Over on the other side of the pavilion, Nardella and fellow freshman Marshall Sharp were battling for every point at the No. 5 and 6 spots, respectively. Nardella added the second win for Penn with his victory over Princeton’s Dan Davies (7-6, 6-1). Knowing they were one point away from the win, the team rushed over to watch and support Sharp.
Only four courts can be fully seen by the spectators on the balcony but the sheer pandemonium from the Quakers explained it all. Sharp defeated Princeton senior Augie Bloom (2-6, 6-2, 6-4) and clinched the match.
Penn will continue Ivy play this coming weekend in Philadelphia. The Red and Blue are set to host Brown on Saturday at 1 p.m. and Yale on Sunday at 1 p.m.
No. 1 Kocovic/Nardella (Penn) def. McCourt/Day (Princeton) 8-5
No. 2 Court/Katz (Penn) def. Davies/Bloom (Princeton) 8-4
No. 3 Kaplan/Spratt vs. Colautti/Yablon (Princeton) 6-6 (DNF)
Order of finish: 2, 1
No. 1 Zack McCourt (Princeton) def. Nikola Kocovic (Penn) 1-6, 6-3, 3-6
No. 2 Vim De Alwis (Penn) vs. Thomas Colautti 2-6, 6-4, 3-4 (DNF)
No. 3 Jeremy Court (Penn) vs. Joshua Yablon 7-6, 5-5 (DNF)
No. 4 Zach Katz (Penn) def. Alexander Day (Princeton) 6-4, 6-3
No. 5 Matt Nardella (Penn) def. Dan Davies (Princeton) 7-6, 6-1
No. 6 Marshall Sharp (Penn) def. Augie Bloom (Princeton) 2-6, 6-2, 6-4
Order of finish: 1, 4, 5, 6