UK Men’s Tennis improves to 4-0 on season

John Rowland

While the temperatures outside were warming up, the UK Men’s Tennis team (4-0) kept their season’s streak warm Sunday as they defeated the University of Michigan Wolverines (0-1) in the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex.


The match would begin with doubles, where the Wildcats swept the Wolverines. The Cats number one team in doubles, junior Nils Ellefsen and senior Kevin Lai would defeat Jathan Malik and Kevin Wong by a final score of 6-4. Following its finish, the number three team would clinch doubles for the Wildcats as William Bushamuka and Charles Minc (UK) would down Alex Knight and Myles Schalet (Mich) 6-2.


The second team match would remain unfinished as the University of Kentucky took both doubles matches prior to its’ finish. Enzo Wallart and Ryotaro Matsumura’s (UK) match with Davis Crocker and Gabe Tishman (Mich) would end at 5-5.


In singles play, No. 79 William Bushamuka (UK) would hand Jathan Malik (Mich) a 6-4, 6-4 loss. Including his most recent win over Duke’s No. 12 ranked Nick Alvarez, Bushamuka advanced to 4-0 in singles play. Bushamuka would grind out his win in both sets against Malik, coming back from 2-4 in the first and from 1-3 in the second.


UK’s Ryotaro Matsumura would get the better of Michigan’s Davis Crocker with a 6-2, 6-3 win. This win would advance Matsumura to 4-0 in singles play on the season. Both sets started out with games being exchanged until each had claimed 2. From there, Matsumura would pull away to earn his victory.


In the third match, No. 117 Nils Ellefsen (UK) would defeat Carter Lin (Mich) 6-2, 6-0. Ellefsen would drop the first game then bounce back and win the next five. He would lose the next, then claim the first set. In the second set, Ellefsen swept Lin in six straight. This would notch his fourth straight win in singles play.


In the singles fourth match play, sophomore Trey Yates (UK) would suffer a loss to Alex Knight (Mich) 6-7 (7), 4-6. Yates would fall just short in the tiebreaker in the first set, after battling back from being down 1-3 at one point during the tiebreaker period. He would win the first game in the second set, then quickly find himself in a 2-4 deficit. Yates would battle back to make the second set 4-5 but would fall short in the closing game.


Playing on despite the match being clinched, Enzo Wallart (UK) played in the fifth match against Kevin Wong (Mich) and Wallart would be handed a loss in a close 6-7, 6-7 (0) match. Wallart would trade games with Wong and neither would see a lead more than two games.


Also playing on despite the match being clinched, Austin Hussey (UK) would play the sixth match versus Myles Schalet in a marathon of a match of which Schalet would come away with the victory in a 5-7, 7-6 (11-13) match. In a super tiebreaker, it goes until the first competitor reaches 10 points, winning by two. Here, the super tiebreaker ended in a 13-11 advantage Schalet.


UK is slated to play in Charlottesville, Virginia to face the Virginia Cavaliers on January 31 with first serve at 12:00 pm and will return home for a double-header against the Murray State Racers and the Dayton Flyers.