TENNIS: Men play in the Bay Area, women battle through the Sunshine State
While most of Yale College enjoyed spring break, the Yale tennis teams hit the road for a busy week of matches with the men picking up three losses and the women picking up three wins and a loss.
This week, the Yale men’s tennis team battled its way through California while the women’s team picked up three wins against Florida Atlantic, Florida International and Stony Brook and lost to Central Florida.
The Yale men’s tennis team (8–7, 0–0 Ivy) added three hard-fought losses to its record. It traveled out to the Golden State to take on the University of California, Berkeley (10–5, 1–2 Pac-12), Saint Mary’s (3–11, 1–2 West Coast) and Santa Clara (7–6, 2–0).
Michael Sun ’23 led the Bulldogs in singles against the Bears, followed by Theo Dean ’24, Cody Lin ’22, Shervin Dehmoubed ’25, Aidan Reilly ’25 and Luke Neal ’25. Renaud Lefevre ’24 and Lin headed the team in doubles, ahead of Dean with Reilly and Walker Oberg ’25 with Sun. Sunday and Tuesday, the team maintained the same doubles line-up but changed the last three lines of singles. Reilly played the fourth line of singles, followed by Neal and Oberg.
“Despite losing a few matches, the trip was really good overall for our program,” men’s tennis head coach Chris Drake said. “We are fortunate to be able to take the team out to the Bay Area for a week of great competition in really nice weather.”
Through the California stretch, Reilly didn’t drop a single match, showing off his promise and grit. Dean’s mental strength also shined through in California with wins against UC Berkeley and St. Mary’s on back-to-back days.
Lefevre mentioned how nice it was to play in his home state of California, with his “friends and family supporting and watching.” Despite the losses, the team showed tremendous resilience. He and his doubles partner Lin came close to beating Cal’s doubles team of Yuta Kikiuchi and Carl Emil Overbeck, which is nationally ranked 28th, but they were pulled off the court when the Bears clinched their fourth point, securing their team’s win.
“Our team is already so close because we only consist of eight players, but the trip did allow us to spend a lot more time together off the court,” Lefevre said. His off-court highlight of the trip was mini-golfing with his teammates.
While the men battled it out in California, the women’s team (8–7, 0–0 Ivy) ventured to Florida, where they took on No. 66 Florida Atlantic (10–9, 0–0 CUSA), No. 40 Florida International (12–3, 0–0) and the No. 18 University of Central Florida (12–6, 0–0 AAC).
After tight battles against the Owls and the Panthers, the Bulldogs clinched 4–3 and 4–2 victories, respectively. The Elis ended their Florida saga with a 1–4 loss to UCF.
“Getting the chance to play three ranked teams was a great opportunity [for the team],” women’s tennis head coach Rachel Kahan said.
Kahan highlighted Jamie Kim ’25 for clinching her No. 6 singles match against FIU in the third set (7–5, 2–6, 6–2) and Caroline Dunleavy ’22 for “pulling out a close match against UCF” (7–5, 7–6).
Last Sunday, Chelsea Kung ’23 led the team in singles, followed by Jessie Gong ’23, Mirabelle Brettkelly ’25, Rhea Shrivastava ’23, Kathy Wang ’22 and Kim. Kung and Gong played No. 1 doubles, ahead of Shrivastava with Brettkelly and Wang with Dunleavy. The team held the same line-up against FIU, with the exception of Vivian Cheng ’23 at No. 5 singles. Against UCF, the Bulldogs switched up their singles line-up. Kung headed the team in singles, followed by Dunleavy, Brettkelly, Gong, Shrivastava and Cheng.
After their Florida trip, the women welcomed Stony Brook (3–7, 0–0 CAA) to Cullman-Heyman Tennis Center on Sunday. In its non conference finale for the season, Yale dominated the Seawolves (7–0). Kung and Gong played No. 1 doubles, ahead of Dunleavy with Wang and Cheng with Kim. Kung headed the team in singles, followed by Dunleavy, Gong, Cheng, Wang and Kim.
The Bulldogs earned a 6–0 victory at No. 1 singles, and across all three lines of doubles, lost only four games.
This weekend, both teams will begin conference play. Saturday, the women will host Brown (6–7, 0–0 Ivy) in Cullman-Heyman Tennis Center at 1 p.m. The men will travel to Providence to take on the Bears (9–6, 0–0) at 1 p.m. on Sunday.