Miami’s inaugural ACC tennis match ended in heart-wrenching defeat as the Virginia Tech Hokies beat the ‘Canes 4-3.
The Sunday afternoon match at the Neil Schiff Tennis Center turned into five hours of agonizing play as both teams brought all they had to the court, but, unfortunately for the ‘Canes, all they had just wasn’t enough.
Beginning with doubles matches, the ‘Canes gained the advantage after winning at first and second doubles 8-4 and 8-3, respectively. Singles opened with sophomore Josh Cohen clinching a win after some controversy over bad calls from his Hokie opponent Arvid Puranen. Cohen was able to silence him with his final match point that left Puranen dazed. Cohen, ranked 54th nationally in singles, now has a 6-2 record.
“He wasn’t making very clear calls. In the second set I hit him with a forehand and he claimed never called it out and I assumed it was my game, but fortunately it ended in my favor,” Cohen said.
Then, in an unsuspecting turn of events, all four ‘Canes were down and looking at a third set of play. The first to go down was junior Tim Krebs, who prior to this match had not lost a singles match this season. Playing unlike his usual dominant and aggressive self, Krebs was beat by senior Stephane Rod 2-6, 6-3, 6-4.
Freshman Vivek Subramanian also had a tough match when he lost his focus after dropping a match point in the second set and never recovered. Subramanian was defeated 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 and now has an overall record of 5-2 in singles play.
A light of hope flickered after junior Eric Hechtman’s victory in his third set of play. Hechtman put every last bit of his energy into his singles match, but at one point in his third set he called an injury time out for cramping. He still managed to leave his opponent Albert Larregola in dispute with the referee over the final match point.
Finally, all eyes were on junior John “Shauny” Hoyes. After losing his focus with the score 5-2 win the second set, Hoyes just couldn’t keep his serve up to par until the beginning of the third set. Both players went back and forth between deuce and match point until Angel Diankov got the upper hand as he landed a shot barely out of Hoyes’ reach. That sealed the ‘Canes’ first loss after six straight wins.
The Hurricanes’ next matchup will be at the Neil Schiff Tennis Center Wednesday at 6 p.m. as they host their second ACC match against Wake Forest.
Antoinette Cordova can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.