PHILADELPHIA - The Quakers conclude their season this weekend when they play their final home match of the season on Friday against Cornell and then take to the road for a Sunday match versus Columbia. Weather-permitting, Penn's Friday match will get underway on the Lott Tennis Courts at 2 p.m., while the team faces Columbia at 2 p.m. on Sunday in New York.
Last week, the Red and Blue were swept at home by Harvard and Dartmouth to fall to 1-4 in the Ivy League and 12-5 overall. Junior Phil Law was the only Quaker to go 2-0 on the weekend in singles. He took care of his Harvard opponent on Saturday, 6-3, 6-4, and needed three sets in his match against Dartmouth but pulled out the victory, 1-6, 6-4, 10-2.
In doubles, the freshman tandem of Zach Katz and Ivan Turudic also went 2-0 last weekend at the No. 2 spot. They picked up their third straight win in the Ivies, and are 4-1 overall against Ancient Eight opponents. The victories gave them their ninth and 10th wins this spring, tying their record in the fall. The freshmen duo are now 20-7 together overall on the season.
Cornell comes into the weekend with a 21-4 record on the year and more importantly is undefeated in the Ivy League so far, 4-0. Princeton (5-0) is the only other team in the conference who is undefeated as well. All nine Ancient Eight games that both teams were involved in were by tight 4-3 scores. The Big Red has led the league in the ITA national rankings for most of the season. They are currently ranked 50th, but were 46th last week, and were as high as 40th earlier in the season. Princeton (No. 58) and Harvard (No. 65) are the only other Ivy teams also ranked in the latest ITA polls.
Columbia was 16-5 overall last year and are the reigning Ivy League champions finishing with a 6-1 record against Ancient Eight opponents. After losing their top two singles players, the Lions have struggled this season, going 7-13 overall and 1-3 in the conference. After Columbia's 4-3 comeback thriller victory over Yale last Friday for their first Ivy win this season, the Lions fell a bit short on Sunday versus Brown by another 4-3 score. The team will visit Princeton first on Friday before coming to Penn on Sunday.
Last season, the Quakers were defeated by Cornell and Columbia, both by the same 5-2 margins. Current sophomore Jason Magnes was the only Quaker to come away with wins against the two schools. He beat his Columbia opponent by a 1-6, 6-0, 6-1 score, followed by another three-set victory, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3, against Cornell.