PHILADELPHIA - After a weekend of tennis in the Robert Levy Tennis Pavilion, one Penn player remained standing in the semifinals, and that was junior Jason Pinsky. Seeded at No.3, Pinsky faced off against the No. 2 seed, Arvid Puranen from Virginia Tech. It was a match for the ages. Both Pinksy and Puranen battled for every point, as game after game went to deuce and beyond multiple times. After falling in the first set, 6-3, Pinsky battled back to dominate the second set, 3-6. But problems with his serve prevented Pinsky from maintaining momentum, and he lost in the third set, 6-1. Puranen advanced to the final to take on Coulmbia's Jared Drucker at 12:15 p.m.
Pinsky had a relatively easy road to the semifinals. After a first-round bye, hestarted his tournamentplay Saturday withMatt Schimmel from Yale. Pinsky beat him 6-2, 6-1, to advance to the round of 32. There, he took on Zolton Bus from Manhattan andwon again, 6-2,6-1.
In the Round of 16,Pinsky faced a highly rankedopponent for the first time, in No. 12 Chris Clayton from Harvard. Though it was abattle, Pinsky came out on top, 6-1, 6-7(6), 6-3. With the win, he advanced to thequarterfinals, which began this morning. He took on Nicolas Delgado,seeded No. 9, and beat him 6-4, 6-2, to advance tothe semifinal round.
Other members of the Pennmen's tennis team had success in ITAs this weekend, though none have advanced as far as Pinsky.
Freshman Eric Riley also entered the singles draw, one of 128 tennis players from the region who competed. In the first round, he took on Rory Green of Yale and won, 6-1, 1-6, 6-4. But he would fall in the round of 64, to Penn State's Ruan Berger, who is seeded in the top 20. Riley put up a good fight but fell 4-6, 6-3, 6-3.
Fellow freshman Adam Schwartz also did well,earning a first-round win over Alejandro Nery of St. Bonaventure, 6-4, 6-2. But he would also fall in the round of 64,to Louis Desmarteaux from St. John's, 4-6, 6-4, 6-1.
Junior Brandon O'Gara also fell in the second round after finding success in the first -- he defeated Andrew Chan from Quinnipiac, 6-4, 6-4, but thenfell to Dave Waslen from Dartmouth, who is seeded in the top 20. O’Gara didn’t go down without a fight, as he lost 4-6, 7-6(5), 7-6(1).
Freshman Alex Vasin also took part in the tournament, but didn’t get past first round action, as he fell to Ilan Shvartz from Stony Brook, 3-6, 7-5, 7-5.
In doubles action, two teams from Penn took part. O’Gara and Schwartz beat Brian Kelly and Marco Lombardo from Holy Cross in the first round, 8-3. But fellin the second round, 8-4, to Virginia Tech’s Brandon Corace and Nicholas Delgado. Pinsky and Riley also teamed up, and went into the tournament seeded fourth. After a first-round bye, they beat Pedro Genovese and Federico Rolon from Marist, 8-2. But they lost in the Round of 16, defeated by Basudev Ratnam and Eric Thomas from Brown, 8-3.
The ITA tournament marks the end of Penn's fall season. They will resume play in February, when they travel to Chicago to take part in the USTA-ITA National Team Indoor Championships.