Tennis: Defeats Notre Dame to Advance to ACC Championship Quarterfinals


CARY, N.C.
– The ninth-seeded Clemson Men’s Tennis team roared into the ACC Championship Quarterfinal with a 4-1 win over eighth-seeded Notre Dame in the Second Round on Thursday at the Cary Tennis Park. The Tigers (14-13) took the doubles point and three freshmen claimed singles wins to push past the 47th-ranked Fighting Irish (13-14) in the teams’ second meeting in the past 12 days. 

Stewart Aronson dropped his first set but fought back against Kyran Magimay to win 2-6, 6-4, 6-4. It was a stunning turnaround from Aronson, who lost to Magimay, 6-2, 6-2 just twelve days ago in South Bend. Aronson’s clinch came after 102nd-ranked Wissam Abderrahman and Noa Vukadin had claimed wins on courts two and three, respectively. 

The Tigers advance to play top-seed and third-ranked Virginia in the Quarterfinal on Friday at 10 a.m. Clemson entered the match against Notre Dame ranked 54th nationally and in need of a victory to remain eligible for the 64-team NCAA Championships. 

“Great performances from multiple guys today, handling adversity well and being great mentally,” Head Coach Brandon Wagner said. “It was a good step forward for the program overall and a great team win. We are looking forward to the opportunity of playing the defending national champions tomorrow morning.

In the teams’ meeting on April 5, Notre Dame won the doubles point and claimed straight-set wins on courts one, three, and five. Thursday’s meeting saw a much different result. 

Clemson claimed the doubles point after Vukadin and junior Max Smith scored Clemson’s biggest upset of the season, a 6-3 win over 8th-ranked Sebastian Dominko and Jean-Marc Malkowski. Notre Dame evened the point with a win on court two, but freshman Marko Mesarovic and redshirt junior Matt Pitts claimed the point with a 7-5 win on court three. 

Abderrahman advanced the overall score to 2-0 after a 7-5, 6-2 over Notre Dame’s Nil Giraldez on court two. Ryuhei Azuma pushed Dominko, ranked 40th nationally, to a third-set tiebreaker after dropping the first set, 6-3. Azuma took the second set 6-1, and the two battled to a 6-6 tie in the third set. But Dominko was able to outlast the Tiger senior, 8-6 in the tiebreak to bring Notre Dame to within one. 

However, Vukadin and Aronson would shut the door, with each earning three-set victories on their respective courts. Vukadin earned a 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 win over Chase Thompson on court three, his 18th singles victory on the season. Aronson’s clinch came next, his sixth win in his last seven decisions overall. Max Smith led 5-2 in his third set on court six, while Mesarovic was knotted up at 5-5 in the third set on court four when Aronson clinched. 

The Tigers will prepare to take on No. 1 seeded Virginia on Friday, April 19, for a chance to play in the ACC Championship Semifinals. The match is slated for 10 a.m. and will be streamed on PlaySight. For complete coverage of the Clemson men’s tennis team, follow @ClemsonMTennis on Twitter and Instagram

(9) Clemson 4, (8) Notre Dame 1

Doubles:

  1. No. 55 Noa Vukadin and Max Smith (CU) def. No. 8 Sebastian Dominko and Jean-Marc Malkowski (ND), 6-3
  2. Nil Giraldez and Chase Thompson (ND) def. Wissam Abderrhman and Max Damm (CU), 6-4
  3. Marko Mesarovic and Matt Pitts (CU) def. Evan Lee and Yu Zhang (ND), 7-5

Order of Finish: 1,2,3 

Singles:

  1. No. 40 Sebastian Dominko (ND) def. No. 95 Ryuhei Azuma (CU) 6-3, 1-6, 7-6 (8-6)
  2. No. 102 Wissam Abderrhman (CU) def. Nil Giraldez (ND) 7-5, 6-2 
  3. Noa Vukadin (CU) def. Chase Thompson (ND) 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 
  4. Jameson Corsillo (ND) vs. Marko Mesarovic (CU) 2-6, 6-2, 5-5, unfinished 
  5. Stewart Aronson (CU) def. Kyran Magimay (ND) 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 
  6. Yu Zhang (ND) vs. Max Smith (CU) 6-4, 4-6, 2-5, unfinished

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