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The Dartmouth
May 28, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Men’s tennis sees five members advance to play in ITA Super Regionals this weekend

On Oct. 6 through Oct. 9 men’s tennis competed fiercely—showing their strong suit in doubles play and the strength and support they have for one another.

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This past weekend, men’s tennis traveled to New Haven to compete in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Regionals at Yale University. The Big Green faced off against 13 other collegiate teams. 

Double pairs Henry Ren ’26 and Alex Knox-Jones ’25 with Miles Groom ’26 and Waleed Qadir ’26 will travel to New Jersey this weekend to compete, after securing two spots to play in doubles. Ren and Yujiro Onuma ’27 also secured a spot in the singles matches. 

The competition started on Friday, Oct. 6 with co-captain Logan Chang ’24 playing solo for Dartmouth for the day. In his first ever Regionals, Chang had a three-set win (0-6, 7-5, 6-2) over Marist College that allowed him to advance to the next day. Ren expressed that he was proud of  Chang’s progress and hard work leading up to the event. 

“To see him finally get a win at Regionals, at his first ever Regionals was a huge deal,” Ren said. “He came back from a huge deficit and then battled all the way back and was able to pull off the win. That was very inspiring, especially as a team captain, leading by example.” 

On Saturday, Oct. 7, more of the Big Green’s roster had their turn on the court. Doubles pairings Ren and Knox-Jones, Groom and Qadir, Onuma and Chang and Carlos Guerrero Alvarez ’25 and Xander Barber ’27 all won in their matches. Their success awarded Dartmouth 5-for-5 for doubles. Guerrero Alvarez and Barber swept their match 8-0 while the rest of the duos finished 8-6, allowing all to advance in the competition.

In singles that day, Ren, Onuma, Knox-Jones, Barber and Guerrero Alvarez all had two-set wins. Chang was unable to continue his winning streak — ending his day in a two-set loss along with Qadir and Groom.

“I think after losing singles, we [Qadir and Groom] knew all we had was doubles,” Qadir said. “So I think we’re definitely very motivated and hungry to focus and do our best in doubles and get a spot in Super Regionals.”

Qadir and Groom have been partners since last year. With time, the pair has gotten to know the other well, and that has led to success on the court. Groom reflected on the strength of his partnership with Qadir.

“Doubles pairs have to have good chemistry on the court, but I feel like away from tennis too,” Groom said. “Getting on well with your partner helps a lot because you know what to say at the right times to pick them up.”

The rapport between Qadir and Groom paid off as they were able to secure a spot at the ITA Super Regionals in doubles along with Ren and Knox-Jones. Qadir and Groom came out with a 8-6 victory while Ren and Know-Jones came out with a 8-2 victory. Unfortunately, Guerrero Alvarez and Barber and Chang and Onuma were not able to secure a spot in Super Regionals for doubles, losing their respective matches.

“Having similar goals and what we want to do as a pair unites [us],” Qadir said. “We can work on the same things and work towards the same goal and still be there to encourage each other along the way.”

On the third day of Regionals, the Big Green won four of their seven singles matches as Ren, Onuma, Barber and Groom won in two-sets. Knox-Jones lost in two-sets and Guerrero Alvarez and Chang lost in three-sets, eliminating their chances of advancing to Super Regionals.

Monday, Oct. 9 was the last day of singles matches — which decided whether or not a player would qualify for Super Regionals. Ren, Barber and Onuma all stepped into the court to prove what they are made of against Harvard University. In the end, Ren and Onuma would come out victorious as Onuma won in two-sets (6-2, 7-6) and Ren in three-sets (4-6, 6-3, 6-3). The sophomore and freshman, respectively, will be the only two representing the Big Green in singles at the ITA Super Regionals. 

Additionally, Ren was undefeated the entire weekend, designating him one of the Athletes of the Week by Dartmouth Athletics. He reflected on the added value of support he felt from his teammates and coaches that aided his success. 

“My last singles match against Harvard started off a little bit slow, got broken in the first, and he was able to take the first set,” Ren said. “But watching and hearing my teammates on the courts behind me really helped me push through and was able just to come back and find that win.”

All eyes look to the five that will carry the torch for Dartmouth at the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Super Regionals. Members of Dartmouth men’s tennis will travel to Princeton to play at Princeton University starting on Friday, Oct. 20.