Miller wins clincher against Kingsmen

Sophomore Duke Miller sets up for a forehand. (credit: File Photo) Sophomore Duke Miller sets up for a forehand. (credit: File Photo)

The ITA National Indoor Tennis Championships, hosted by the University of Mary Washington, saw its second appearance from the Carnegie Mellon tennis team last weekend.

The No. 8 Tartans improved from their performance last year and took fourth place, upsetting No. 7 California Lutheran University in the first round 5–4, thanks to a clinch match win by sophomore Duke Miller, before falling to No. 4 Emory University in the semifinals and No. 2 University of California, Santa Cruz in the playoff match. The Tartans move to 8–4 for the year.

The Tartans got off to a thrilling start with a 2–1 lead after doubles play against the Cal Lutheran Kingsmen. At No. 2 doubles, the new team of junior Jeremy King and senior Alex Nemerov took down Andrew Giuffrida and Justin Wilson 8–3. The second point came from the No. 3 doubles team of sophomores Harsha Rao and Jooho Yu.

In singles, King emerged victorious over his opponent in three sets, 6–1, 4–6, 6–4, followed by Yu. With the Tartans at 4–4 overall, the crowds gathered around Miller’s court to see which side would take the deciding match. Miller beat the pressure, cramping, and the Kingmen’s Ray Worley 6–2, 5–7, 7–5 to give the Tartans their first upset of the season and a pass to the semifinals.

Despite fresh momentum from the previous day, the Tartans did not have much luck the next two days, falling to the Emory Eagles 8–1 and to the Santa Cruz Banana Slugs 5–4. Against the Slugs, Miller and Nemerov proved their worth for the third day and managed to pull out wins at No. 1 and No. 3 singles, respectively.

The Tartans will travel to Gambier, Ohio, next weekend to take on the Kenyon College Lords.

Editor’s Note: Jeremy King is a staffwriter for The Tartan.