IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa men’s tennis team defeated UMKC (4-3) and Omaha (5-2) on Friday afternoon at the Hawkeye Tennis & Recreation Complex. The pair of wins improved Iowa’s overall record to 8-1.
With the first match of the day on the line, Kareem Allaf and Tom Kruse of UMKC were the center of attention as the Hawkeyes and ‘Roos were knotted up at 3-3. Allaf outlasted Kruse in the third set to propel the home squad to victory.
In doubles play, Iowa captured the point for the seventh time in eight matches to grab an early 1-0 advantage over UMKC. Oliver Okonkwo and Will Davies won on court two, 6-2, with Davies smashing four aces in one game. Nikita Snezhko saw action on Friday playing with sophomore partner Joe Tyler, winning 6-4 on court three, to clinch the point.
Iowa split the singles matches to record the team win. The Hawkeyes won the first two singles matches on courts four and six. Piotr Smietana and Okonkwo won in straight sets to give Iowa a 3-0 advantage.
In the doubleheader nightcap, the Hawkeyes set the tone in doubles winning every match. Snezhko and Tyler won their second doubles match of the day with a 6-1 victory over Omaha on court three. Allaf and Larsen followed suit with a convincing 6-1 victory on court one. Davies and Okonkwo kept things rolling as they defeated the Mavericks’ tandem, 6-2, on court two. The Hawkeye duo have seen a lot of success, improving to 13-3 dating back to fall competition.
In singles action, Iowa took four out of the six matches against the Mavericks. Smietana got things going for the Hawkeyes, recording his seventh win of the season on court six in straight sets. Allaf was quick to finish as well, playing his first match of the year on court two and winning, 6-3, 6-1. Davies clinched the match with another straight set victory, his seventh win of the spring. Larsen won his first match playing No. 1 for Iowa (6-2, 6-3). Okonkwo and Tyler dropped their matches in third set tiebreakers.
Quoting Head Coach Ross Wilson
“We definitely got better. That’s the one thing about our team over the last year and this year, even though we have only lost once to Miami last Friday. Then we came back Sunday against Utah and played with great energy and attitudes, and we did that tonight in our second match. We didn’t play our best tennis against UMKC, but we were able to make adjustments. We came out and played with confidence and get a convincing win.”
The Hawkeyes hit the road for the first time this season when they take on Cornell at 11 a.m. (ET) on Sunday in Ithaca, New York.
Iowa 4, UMKC 3
Feb. 15, 2019 | Noon | Iowa City, Iowa | HTRC
1. #89 Kareem Allaf (UI) def. Tom Kruse (UMKC): 6-2, 3-6, 6-2
2. Diego Giraldo (UMKC) def. Jonas Larsen (UI): 6-4, 6-4
3. Ben Stride (UMKC) def. Joe Tyler (UI): 6-3, 6-3
4. Oliver Okonkwo (UI) def. Neil O’Connor (UMKC): 6-3, 6-1
5. Hunter Clark (UMKC) def. Will Davies (UI): 6-2, 6-1
6. Piotr Smietana (UI) def. Anil Patel (UMKC): 6-1, 6-3
1. Giraldo/Stride (UMKC) def. Allaf/Larsen (UI): 6-3
2. Davies/Okonkwo (UI) def. Clark/O’Connor (UMKC): 6-2
3. Snezhko/Tyler (UI) def. Kruse/Izadifar (UMKC): 6-4
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1,3); Singles (4,6,5,3,2,1)
Iowa 5, UMKC 2
Feb. 15, 2019 | 5 p.m. | Iowa City, Iowa | HTRC
1. Jonas Larsen (UI) def. Abdoul Ouattrara (Omaha): 6-2, 6-3
2. #89 Kareem Allaf (UI) def. Nathan Reekie (Omaha): 6-3, 6-1
3. Davis Lawley (Omaha) def. Joe Tyler (UI): 7-5, 3-6, 10-8
4. Hugo Piles Ballester (Omaha) def. Oliver Okonkwo (UI): 3-6, 7-6(7), 12-10
5. Will Davies (UI) def. Matt Dunn (Omaha): 6-3, 6-2
6. Piotr Smietana (UI) def. Ethan Henry (Omaha): 6-2, 6-1
1. Allaf/Larsen (UI) def. Ouattara/Lawley (Omaha): 6-1
2. Davies/Okonkwo (UI) def. Dunn/Reekie (Omaha): 6-3
3. Snezhko/Tyler (UI) def. Henry/Woodward (Omaha): 6-3
Order of Finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (6,2,5,1,3,4)