DURHAM, N.C. – Senior Henrique Cunha continued his dominant senior season with a win in singles and doubles, as the ninth-ranked Duke men’s tennis team swept No. 53 Miami, 7-0, Sunday afternoon at Ambler Tennis Stadium. The Blue Devils advance to 19-4 for the season and 7-1 in Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) play, while the Hurricanes fall to 13-10 overall and 2-6 in ACC action.
“Overall, it was a really solid effort, especially in singles,” said head coach Ramsey Smith. “We didn’t lose a set, didn’t really come close to losing a set. Miami is a solid team and I am really happy with our performance”
The Blue Devils opened the doubles portion of the match in impressive fashion, sweeping Miami on all three courts. The tandem of Michael Redlicki and Jason Tahir won the first match of the day at the No. 2 spot in the lineup over Diego Soto and Wilfredo Flores, 8-5. The win is their 21st of the season. At the third position, the tandem of Chris Mengel and Fred Saba clinched the opening point after downing Marco Stancati and Henrique Tsukanoto, 8-3.
“It has been good to have a consistent partner,” said Tahir. “I feel like when we bring a lot of energy, we are playing aggressively and we are tough to beat. It has been good.”
At the top spot in the lineup, the top-ranked team of Cunha and Raphael Hemmeler completed the sweep with their 10th consecutive win over Omar Aly and Wilfredo Gonzalez, 8-4. The duo has now won at least 10 straight matches for the second time this season, as they won 16 consecutive earlier in the year. In addition, Cunha and Hemmeler become just the fourth pair in program history to win 30 matches in a season, as they now own a 30-3 overall record.
The Blue Devils continued to keep the pressure on the Hurricanes in the singles portion, as Tahir captured 11 straight games to open his match on his way to a 6-0, 6-1 win over Victor Mauz. The sophomore now owns a 17-1 mark for the spring.
“I was just trying to focus on every point,” Tahir said. “I was just trying to get better on what I worked on in practice this whole week. I felt that helped me earn the win today.”
At the top position, Cunha remained unbeaten for the spring with a 6-1, 6-1 win over Soto. The senior quickly went up 4-0 in the first set, before winning the set, 6-1. In the second, Cunha won the first five games en route to a 6-1, 6-1 win. The win for Cunha is his 27th of the season and his 15th consecutive to open the spring campaign.
In his match at the fourth position, Mengel was able to win the first break of the match at 2-1, en route to winning the first set, 6-2. In the second, the junior quickly dispatched Aly in six straight games, 6-2, 6-0, to seal the win for Duke.
Hemmeler picked up his team-leading 30th win on court five over Stancati, 6-3, 6-3, while Saba downed Flores on court two, 6-3, 6-3. Redlicki completed the sweep for the Blue Devils with a 6-4, 6-3 win at the No. 3 spot in the lineup over Gonzalez.
Up next, the Blue Devils will play their final two matches of the regular season next weekend, as they host Boston College Friday, April 2 at 3 p.m., Duke concludes its regular season against N.C. State Sunday, April 4 at 1 p.m. The squad’s lone senior Henrique Cunha will be honored prior to the match.
Tennis Match Results
Miami vs Duke
Apr 14, 2013 at Durham, N.C.
(Ambler Tennis Stadium)
#9 Duke 7, #53 Miami 0
1. #3 Henrique Cunha (DU) def. Diego Soto (UM) 6-1, 6-1
2. #26 Fred Saba (DU) def. Gabriel Flores (UM) 6-3, 6-3
3. #43 Michael Redlicki (DU) def. Wilfredo Gonzalez (UM) 6-4, 6-3
4. #112 Chris Mengel (DU) def. Omar Aly (UM) 6-2, 6-0
5. #71 Raphael Hemmeler (DU) def. Marco Stancati (UM) 6-3, 6-3
6. Jason Tahir (DU) def. Victor Mauz (UM) 6-0, 6-1
1. #1 Henrique Cunha/Raphael Hemmeler (DU) def. Omar Aly/Wilfredo Gonzalez (UM) 8-4
2. #17 Michael Redlicki/Jason Tahir (DU) def. Diego Soto/Gabriel Flores (UM) 8-5
3. #61 Fred Saba/Chris Mengel (DU) def. Marco Stancati/Henrique Tsukamoto (UM) 8-3
Miami 13-10; National ranking #53
Duke 19-4; National ranking #9
Order of finish: Doubles (2,3,1); Singles (6,1,4,5,2,3)