Miles Rochester, Sports Editor
The Fighting Scots’ men’s tennis team traveled to Denison University this past weekend and took on a number of teams at the 2022 Big Red Invitational. While the Scots fought hard in their 24 battles, they only won seven matches on Saturday Sept. 24 and two matches on Sunday Sept. 25. The Wooster men showed grit and an enduring mindset as they successfully bounced back from the previous week’s altercation with Walsh University to continue the march of a long and promising season.
Alex Drews ’23 is a name to remember when it comes to Wooster tennis, and he did not disappoint. The senior took on two opponents on the first day of the tournament, the first being Aidan Biglow ’23, a challenger from Kenyon College. Drews dispatched the first threat, winning in straight sets of 6-1 and making it look easy. The next unfortunate soul to face Drews was Jesse Stevens ’25, an unsuspecting visitor from Capital University who forgot to bring the coffee and was, in turn, served donuts as Drews once again handed his opponent losses in straight sets, this time 6-0, 6-0. “Winning is always nice,” said Drews, “but the closer the match, the more joy you get out of winning it.” Although the senior Scot crushed his opponents on the first day, there seemed to be a longing for a more joyous win on Sunday.
The senior’s spectacular performance must have inspired the team’s first-year players, as three captured their very first wins for Wooster on Saturday. Jack Bowers ’26 was the first of this trio and accomplished this feat by defeating yet another Capital opponent, Jackson Havel ’26, in straight sets (6-2, 6-3). Another victory for the first-years came when duo Gabriel Escobar ’26 and Namit Misra ’26 defeated the opposing duo of Tristan Munteanu ’25 and Kavya Desai ’25, of Ohio Northern University, 8-4. This win was Wooster’s standalone doubles win of the competition and of the season so far. In another match with Castro, an Ohio Northerner, Patrick Johnson ’25 pulled a few tricks out of his deep bag to clutch a nail-biting singles win (7-6 (4), 6-4). The final triumphs of day one resulted from shining performances against Ohio Northern’s Mac Robertson ’26 and Kenyon’s Aidan Biglow by Shivam Dewan ’24, beating both opponents (6-1, 6-1) and (8-1) respectively. The Scots were fired up and looked to strike again on Sunday.
When the sun rose in Granville, Escobar, fresh off his first collegiate win, decided to rise with it. The first-year was one of seven singles competitors from Wooster and one of two who won their match. “Winning is always nice,” if you recall, but Escobar’s win was electric. After losing in the first set 3-6, Escobar turned the score around to take the second and send it to a tiebreaker that seemed to last forever. When the match finally reached its conclusion, Escobar was on top, tenaciously winning the tedious tiebreaker fourteen to twelve.
When Drews reflected on his favorite moment from the Invitational, he mentioned his appreciation for his fellow Scot. “Having myself and my teammate, Gabriel Escobar, competing side by side in the final matches was my favorite moment,” he said. “We both had tough matches against Ohio Northern and seeing [Escobar] win out in a long third set tiebreak gave me the confidence to win in my match as well. It was a great way to finish out the long weekend.” Drews also won his Sunday matchup (7-6(6), 6-1) and this time it’s likely that he found a bit more joy in doing so.
The Scots will look to capture some doubles wins this weekend at the Ashland Doubles Invitational. Go Scots!