Well... nothing comes easy but the Wake Forest Men’s Tennis finally gets the ever elusive indoors NATIONAL TITLE.
Throughout the past few days the Deacs played every type of match possible, a 4-0 dominant sweep of the hosts Washington, a 4-1 drubbing of the number 8 team in the nation USC Trojans, and an absolute classic in the semifinals, beating Stanford 4-3 with Borna Gojo winning in a final set tiebreaker.
However, there was still one more match for the #1 team in the nation, UCLA coming off an an absolute torrid run in the other half of the bracket.
Things seemed to be going fine when the combination of Junior Petros Chrysochos and Freshman Bar Botzer took #3 doubles at 6-4. Borna Gojo and Skander Mansouri had 2 match points on UCLA’s serve but couldnt get it done, and with Christian Seraphim and Ryan Dempster falling at #1 the Bruins took the doubles point.
And then the singles storm came.
Freshman Rrezart Cungu fell on court 5 6-3,6-2 but then everything else went Black(and Gold) Julian Zlobinsky capped off an amazing run this weeking with a 6-3, 6-0 win at #6 and Chrysochos finished right behind him at #2 6-3, 6-4 to tie it up at 2 matches a piece.
Bar Botzer closed out a solid 6-4 6-4 win(at line 4) and Wake Forest found themselves up and within one match of their first Indoors national title. Borna Gojo had dropped the first set but came from a break down to push his match into a deciding 3rd set, but wasn’t called upon to clinch for the second match in a row.
Skander Mansouri took the first set with a routine 6-4 score. However the Senior from Tunisia was down a break 3-5, but stormed back to take the lead and serve for the championship. Mansouri was broken and eventually taken to a tiebreak where he was up 4-0.
But NOTHING COMES EASY AT WAKE.
His opponent Keegan Smith decided to take a page out of my book and just start gripping and ripping and brought it back to 7-all. However after a netted backhand by Smith, Mansouri had his 4th match point, after trading blow for blow, Smith left a ball long and the Deacs won their first indoors national Title.
This sets the team up for a fantastic year as they look to get into the meat of their schedule after a much needed near month break off before their next match.
The outdoor championships are set for May 11th but Wake will be hosting the championships starting with the round of 16 on May 17th. How sweet would it be for the Deacs to double dip with one at home?
But for now lets cherish this National title as this team has proven that they’re something special.