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Men’s tennis sweeps Tulsa, advances to NCAA quarterfinals

The fourth-ranked Ohio State men’s tennis team defeated No. 36 Tulsa, 4-0, in the third round of the NCAA Championship Tournament on Thursday. The Buckeyes advance to the quarterfinals in which they will face No. 5 Baylor on Saturday.

This is the third time in the tournament that the Buckeyes have shut out their opponents, 4-0. The Buckeyes advanced to the third round after defeating Ball State and Notre Dame at home on May 13 and 14.

In doubles action, the Buckeyes earned their first point of the night with wins from doubles pairs senior Balazs Novak and freshman Blaz Rola, and junior Chase Buchanan and senior Shuhei Uzawa.

Novak and Rola were the first to finish their match, beating Tulsa’s Grant Ive and Tristan Jackson, 8-3.

However, Tulsa’s Clifford Marsland and Ashley Watling answered on court one with an 8-6 win against OSU’s senior Matt Allare and redshirt freshman Peter Kobelt.

Clinching the win in doubles for the Buckeyes was Buchanan and Uzawa with a close 8-5 win.

Buchanan and Uzawa have the experience to prepare themselves for these matches.

“We’ve been in big matches before, and we have belief in ourselves and the coaching staff,” Buchanan said.

Buchanan, Novak and Allare combined singles wins for the last three points of the match.

Buchanan finished early, defeating Japie De Klerk, 6-1, 6-1.

Earning the next point for OSU was Allare with a 6-3, 7-5 win against Marsland, and following soon after with the winning match point was Novak with a 6-2, 6-4 victory against Jackson.

“This is what the year’s all about,” Buchanan said Friday. “It felt good to win the match quickly, and we’re looking forward to tomorrow’s match against Baylor.”

OSU advances to the fourth round at 7 p.m. Saturday at Stanford. This is the first time this tournament that the Buckeyes will face a seeded opponent.

Uzawa listed Baylor as one of the top competitors the Buckeyes might face in the tournament earlier this season.

If the Buckeyes defeat Baylor, they will advance to the semifinals Monday.

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