NORMAN – The Oklahoma men’s tennis team opened the 2019 season with a 7-0 sweep of Abilene Christian Sunday inside the Headington Family Tennis Center.
“Today was a great day to get out here and play tennis. We had a huge crowd – we had one of the biggest crowds I’ve ever seen for an opener and we filled the stands,” said head coach Nick Crowell. “I want to thank all the Sooner fans for coming out.”
The Sooners opened the match with the doubles point. Mason Beiler and Jake Van Emburgh got the first doubles win of the day, taking down ACU’s Nikolas Moceanu and Sebastian Langson 6-2 on court two.
On court one, Spencer Papa and Ferran Calvo fell to Josh Sheehy and Jonathan Sheehy 6-4. The point came down to court three, where Stefano Tsorotiotis and Max Stewart rallied to defeat Cole Lawson and Jackson Fine, 6-4. Tsorotiotis and Stewart trailed early, but tied the match at 3-all and again at 4-all before winning the final two games to capture the opening point for the Sooners.
“I thought Abilene Christian came out and played a really strong doubles point and pushed us to the edge there and we came back and fought through. We got a break there at 4-all on court three and that put us over the edge. Mason Beiler and Jake Van Emburgh played a really good match at No. 2. I think we can build on that for the future.”
In singles, Tsorotiotis nabbed the Sooners’ first win of the day, rolling past Abilene Christian’s Langson, 6-1, 6-1.
Beiler dominated in his debut, giving up just one game en route to a 6-1, 6-0 victory over Dimitris Azoides.
Said Crowell, “Mason was so solid mentally and physically. … We love the fact that he comes with such passion and work ethic and he has huge things coming in his future.”
Calvo took down ACU’s Moceanu on court three, 6-1, 6-3. With the second frame tied at 3-all, Calvo won his last three games straight to claim his court for the Sooners.
On court two, Van Emburgh defeated Jonathan Sheehy, 6-3, 6-4. Van Emburgh led the entire match.
OU’s Bertsch defeated Riley Tran 6-1, 6-3, at the No. 5 four line. The Sooner gave up just one game in the first set before Tran got on the board early in the second. Bertsch tied the frame at 3-all before going on a three-game run to win the match.
Papa completed OU’s sweep of Abilene Christian with a three-set win from the No. 1 line. Papa dropped a tight first set to Josh Sheehy, 7-5. Papa trailed 4-2 in the second set before tying the frame at 4-all, 5-all and 6-all to send it to a tiebreaker. The Sooner came out on top, 7-6 (8) to tie the match at one set apiece.
A 10-point tiebreaker was played in lieu of a third set, with Papa outlasting Sheehy for a 1-0 [10-8] victory to seal the win for the Sooners.
“In singles, our guys really came to play on every court and guys got out to pretty big leads,” said Crowell. “At No. 1 – I was really proud of how Spencer composed himself, stayed in the match and when it was time to win, he really became clutch in the big moments and used a couple opportunities. At the end, he hit a great serve to win the match.
“For Spencer coming back off a torn ACL, that’s about as proud as I’ve ever been of a player.”
The Sooners will host Wichita State Thursday in a mid-week matchup at 5:30 p.m. Admission to the Headington Family Tennis Center is always free.
1. Spencer Papa (OU) def. Josh Sheehy (ACU) 5-7, 7-6 (8-6), 1-0 (10-8)
2. Jake Van Emburgh (OU) def. Jonathan Sheehy (ACU) 6-3, 6-4
3. Ferran Calvo (OU) def. Nikolas Moceanu (ACU) 6-1, 6-3
4. Jochen Bertsch (OU) def. Riley Tran (ACU) 6-1, 6-3
5. Mason Beiler (OU) def. Dimitris Azoides (ACU) 6-1, 6-0
6. Stefano Tsorotiotis (OU) def. Sebastian Langson (ACU) 6-1, 6-1
1. Josh Sheehy/Jonathan Sheehy (ACU) def. Spencer Papa/Ferran Calvo (OU) 6-4
2. Mason Beiler/Jake Van Emburgh (OU) def. Nikolas Moceanu/Sebastian Langson (ACU) 6-2
3. Stefano Tsorotiotis/Max Stewart (OU) def. Cole Lawson/Jackson Fine (ACU) 6-4
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1,3); Singles (6,5,3,2,4,1)