| By New York Tennis Magazine Staff
Photo credit: ECACSports.com

The Columbia women’s tennis team captured the 2016 Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division I Women’s Indoor Tennis Championship on Sunday, knocking off Harvard 4-2 in the final.

The Lions had to pull double-duty on Sunday after a power-outage on Saturday night postponed its semifinal match against Dartmouth until Sunday morning. The match resumed with both teams tied at 3-3, leaving the contest to be decided by the final singles match.

Columbia freshman Andrea Kevakian came up clutch for the Lions, winning the final set 6-4 over Dartmouth’s Julia Schoreder to send Columbia to the championship.

In the championship, Columbia quickly snatched up the doubles point with wins from Rima Asatrian/Alexandra Solovyev and Star Makarome/Kevakian. Harvard responded with singles wins from Sabrina Xiong, who played her high school tennis at Cardozo in Queens, and Amy He, to go up 2-1.

But Columbia answered right back, as Kanika Vaidya, Erica Oosterhout and Solovyev picked up straight set victories to seal the deal for Columbia.

Columbia improves to 4-2 on the season.

Columbia Men Sweep Navy
Playing in its final tune up before it heads to the ITA Indoor Championships in Virginia this weekend, the Columbia men’s tennis team defeated Navy 7-0 at the Dick Savitt Tennis Center on Sunday.

Columbia got things started with victories at all three doubles matches, and then the singles play followed suit, winning all six of the singles matches in straight sets to down Navy 7-0.

The win moves Columbia to 4-0 on the season and the Lions will travel to Charlottesville this weekend for the ITA Nationals.  The 16-team field gets underway on Friday.

St. John’s Men Win Three Weekend Matches to Continue Hot Start
The St. John’s men’s tennis team continued its excellent start to the spring season, winning three matches over the weekend to improve its record to 8-1.

St. John’s was scheduled to play a triple-header on Friday, but because of bad weather, its match against Stony Brook was postponed, leaving two matches for the Red Storm on Friday.

First up was Farleigh Dickinson, and St. John’s won all three doubles matches to get things started. It carried the momentum from there, as Daniel Skripnik won 6-1, 6-2 over Adam Chan at the first singles spot, and the rest of the singles play followed suit. In the end, the Red Storm swept all of the matches for a 7-0 victory.

In the second half of the double-header, St. John’s took on Youngstown State at Sportime Randall’s Island, and the script was about the same in this one. The Red Storm won all three doubles matches to earn the doubles point. Senior Robert Livi notched a 6-0, 6-0 win at third singles and St. John’s never looked back, going on to win 7-0.

The Red Storm returned to action on Sunday and defeated Binghamton 5-2 for its seventh straight victory. Freshman Andrei Crapcenco won his seventh-straight singles match with a 6-2, 6-3 win over Inigo Saez at sixth singles, and senior Vaidik Munshaw knocked off Valentin Bouchet 6-4, 6-1 to help push St. John’s past Binghamton.

“We are very excited to start the season 8-1, and believe we are capable of being a top 50 team,” said Associate Head Coach Cory Hubbard. “One thing we have seen to start this season is every player on the team has come through at different times. It shows we have a lot of depth and don’t have to rely on the same 2-3 guys to get it done. We have put ourselves in a great situation to start the season and have a lot of confidence. Now the competition will get tougher as we will play a lot of ranked teams, but we believe we are prepared and ready for the opportunity.”

St. John’s will next compete at the ECAC Indoor Championships this weekend.

The St. John’s women’s team lost a hard fought 4-3 contest to the University of Massachusetts on Sunday.  The Red Storm held a 3-1 lead before Massachusetts rallied to win the final three matches and win 4-3.

St. John’s women return to action with a double header on Friday.

NYIT Men Beat Youngstown State in Season Opener
The Bears of the New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) won its season opener on Saturday afternoon, knocking off Division I foe Youngstown State 6-3 at Sportime Randall’s Island.

Despite dropping the first two singles matches, NYIT responded to win the final four singles contests, led by East Coast Conference Preseason Player of the Year Tomas Lieb, who defeated Gabriel Tolesani 7-5, 6-4 at fourth singles.

“This was a good win over Division I Youngstown State as we had great energy during doubles and we carried it right over to our singles play,” said NYIT head coach Jason Pasion. “We didn’t play our best tennis but the bottom of our singles lineup was able to close out the match for us.”

NYIT will return to action when it visits Adelphi in an all-Long Island battle on Feb. 19.