Ohio State Men's Tennis Suffers Gut-Wrenching 4-2 Upset Loss to TCU in NCAA Semifinals

By Josh Poloha on May 18, 2024 at 4:37 pm
Ohio State men's tennis loses to TCU in NCAA semifinals
Ohio State Dept. of Athletics

Ohio State men's tennis let the wheels fall off midway through its NCAA semifinal match Saturday afternoon.

Playing in front of a sea of scarlet in Stillwater, Oklahoma, the top-seeded Buckeyes made it look quite easy in the doubles part of the match before falling apart in singles. After taking the doubles point, Ohio State suffered a gut-wrenching 4-2 upset loss to No. 4 seed TCU in the NCAA semifinals, as the Horned Frogs got revenge after the Buckeyes won the matchup in the 2023 semifinals.

Ohio State dominated the first hour before TCU flipped the switch and dominated the next two hours. While the Buckeyes fought back in the final part of the match that took nearly four hours, it wasn't enough after OSU dug themselves in too big of a hole early on in the singles matches.

Doubles Matches
Ohio State TCU Result
No. 3 Robert Cash/JJ Tracy No. 63 Jake Fearnley/Pedro Vives L, 4-6
No. 49 Andrew Lutschaunig/Justin Boulais Sebastian Gorzny/Jack Pinnington W, 6-3
Cannon Kinglsey/Jack Anthrop Duncan Chan/Lui Maxted W, 7-6 (7-4)

The first match of the day was the only upset in doubles. Robert Cash and JJ Tracy went down early, 2-0, before evening things at 2-2 and once again at 4-4. But TCU's Jake Fearnley and Pedro Vives carried the momentum from early on to take the win, 6-4.

Andrew Lutschaunig and Justin Boulais then put the Buckeyes on the scoreboard. Tied 2-2, the Ohio State pair took care of business the rest of the way, earning a 6-3 win.

Cannon Kingsley and Jack Anthrop gave the Buckeyes the doubles point in the most thrilling doubles match of the afternoon. In a back-and-forth affair, as OSU scored first and then the Buckeyes and TCU traded back and forth before Ohio State won, 7-6.

After earning the first point of the match in doubles, singles weren't as easy for the Buckeyes. TCU won four of the six first sets on its way to winning four of the five completed singles matches.

Singles Matches
Ohio State TCU Result
No. 34 Justin Boulais No. 13 Jack Pinnington L: 4-6, 5-7
No. 17 Cannon Kingsley No. 7 Jake Fearnley L: 5-7, 7-5, 2-6
No. 19 JJ Tracy No. 73 Pedro Vives Unfinished: 6-7 (5-7), 6-3, 4-3
No. 30 Jack Anthrop No. 78 Lui Maxted W: 6-3, 3-6, 7-5
Alexander Bernard No. 77 Sebastain Gorzny L: 3-6, 4-6
Robert Cash Tomas Jirousek L: 6-1, 2-6, 5-7

In one of two singles matches that featured TCU as the better-ranked player, Boulais dropped the first set, 4-6. He led 2-1 early on before the Horned Frogs' Jack Pinnington took a 4-2 lead and never looked back. In the second set, Boulais took a 5-3 lead before Pinnington dominated the rest of the way, winning the set, 7-5, to win in straight sets.

Kingsley lost his first set, 5-7, after leading 5-4. He was able to force a third set after winning the back-and-forth second set, 7-5. The third set was never really close though, as Kilingsley lost the final set, 6-2.

After leading 4-1 and 5-2 in the first set, Tracy took his foot off the gas pedal and let Vives back in the game as TCU eventually took the set, 7-6 (7-5). Tracy turned things around and handled business the rest of the way, though, winning the second set 6-3 before leading in the third set, 4-3, one that went unfinished given that TCU had already won four singles matches to beat OSU.

Jack Anthrop won Ohio State's first singles set of the afternoon, 6-3, after he took an early 5-1 lead. But Maxted answered right back, winning the second set, 6-3, a set the Horned Frogs led from start to finish after taking a dominant 5-1 lead. Anthrop was able to get his rhythm back and win the third set, 7-5, one that he trailed 3-4 midway through, to win the match. It was the Buckeyes' only singles win of the day.

Alexander Bernard fell early in his first set, 4-0, before TCU's Sebastain Gorzny won the set, 6-3. He then lost the second set, 6-4, to lose in straight sets.

Cash, meanwhile, didn't have any problem in the first set, taking an early 5-1 lead before winning the set with ease, 6-1. After making it look easy in the first set, Cash fell in the second set, the Buckeye fell to an early 4-1 deficit in the second set before losing the set, 6-2. Leading 5-3 in the third set, Cash let the wheels fall off and lost the set, 7-5, to lose the match.

Ohio State, which has made the semifinals eight times since 2009, is still seeking its first NCAA championship in program history, a drought that will continue into next season.

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