Both UNC Tennis Teams Finish in Top 5, Seven Tar Heels Named All-Americans

The season may not have ended exactly according to script for the UNC men’s and women’s tennis teams, but their work was certainly rewarded in the year-end polls.

After setting a school record with 31 wins–including 21 straight before its Round of 16 loss to Virginia in the NCAA Tournament–the women’s squad (31-3) was ranked No. 4  in the final Oracle/ITA Collegiate Women’s Tennis Rankings released on Wednesday.

The men’s team finished out the season ranked fifth after making a third straight NCAA Quarterfinal appearance–where the Tar Heels were sent home by Georgia.

Hayley Carter was UNC’s highest ranked individual, ending the year as the No. 2 women’s player in the nation.

She posted a 49-5 singles record and advanced to the NCAA Singles Championship Final last weekend–where she came up short against Virginia’s Danielle Collins.

Ronnie Schneider earned All-American honors for advancing to the Round of 16 in last week's NCAA Singles Tournament. (Jeffrey A. Camarati/ UNC Athletics)

Ronnie Schneider earned All-American honors for advancing to the Round of 16 in last week’s NCAA Singles Tournament. (Jeffrey A. Camarati/ UNC Athletics)

Along with her teammate Whitney Kay, Carter was also was named an All-American in doubles competition. They combined for a 37-7 record on their way to the NCAA Doubles Semifinals–ending the year No. 3 in the rankings.

On the men’s side, senior Brett Clark and sophomore Robert Kelly earned All-America honors for their own performance as a doubles pairing.

Clark and Kelly were ranked No. 4 in the final rankings, but had a chance to be No. 1. Unfortunately, an injury to Kelly forced them to withdraw ahead of the NCAA Doubles Championship Final.

Their recognition gives the Tar Heels five All-Americans on the men’s side.

Ronnie Schneider finished the year ranked No. 23, but was honored for reaching the Round of 16 in the NCAA Singles Tournament, while Brayden Schnur (ranked No. 30) and Jack Murray earned the distinction for reaching the Quarterfinals in the NCAA Doubles Tournament.

UNC Men’s Tennis Loses in NCAA Quarterfinals

The UNC men’s tennis season came to an end on Sunday.

The Tar Heels were facing Georgia in the NCAA Quarterfinals attempting to become the second team in ACC history to reach an NCAA Final Four.

But the Bulldogs were too much for Carolina. Georgia took the opening doubles point and then won the first three singles matches for the overall victory.

While Carolina was serving for wins on two courts, it wasn’t enough as Georgia was able to secure the victory.

It was one of the most successful seasons in UNC history as Carolina won the Indoor National Championship earlier this year.

Tar Heel Men’s Tennis Advances to Third Straight NCAA Quarterfinal

The UNC men’s tennis team isn’t ready to go home just yet.

Continuing the best season in program history, the No. 2 Tar Heels defeated the Mississippi State Bulldogs 4-0 in the NCAA Tournament Round of 16 on Friday in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Now halfway home in their quest for the outdoor national championship–after winning the indoor title in February–UNC (28-4) also set a new school record with its 28th win.

It was also the third straight 4-0 win for the Tar Heels during the tournament, as they have yet to drop a single team point on their way to the quarterfinals.

Mississippi State (18-9) was able to win one of the three doubles sets, and even forced UNC’s team of Brayden Schnur and Jack Murray into a tiebreak.

The Tar Heels prevailed, however, and went on to cruise to a trio of straight-set victories in the singles portion of the event.

Brayden Schnur played a role in two of UNC's four team points on Friday. (Jeffrey A. Camarati/ UNC Athletics)

Brayden Schnur played a role in two of UNC’s four team points on Friday. (Jeffrey A. Camarati/ UNC Athletics)

Schnur, UNC’s top ranked player at No. 26 in the country, was the first to finish–getting a 6-3, 6-4 victory over No. 34 Mate Catura.

Soon after, No. 46 Brett Clark defeated No. 70 Nuno Borges 6-4, 6-4 for his 116th career singles victory as a Tar Heel.

Jack Murray then locked up UNC’s third consecutive trip to the NCAA quarterfinals with a 6-4, 6-3 win against Niclas Braun.

It was quite the response by a Tar Heel squad which saw their women’s counterparts–also among the favorites to bring home a championship–prematurely sent home on Thursday.

Up Next:

UNC returns to action on Sunday, May 22–facing off against the winner of USC and Georgia at 5 p.m.

Match Notes:

  • Schnur’s win over Catura was his seventh victory over a ranked opponent this season, second on UNC behind Ronnie Schneider’s nine such wins.
  • Robert Kelly, who has a 36-7 singles record for UNC this year, was not in the singles lineup Friday.




UNC Men’s Tennis Knocks Off Tulane in NCAA Second Round

It’s on to Tulsa, Oklahoma for the No. 3 UNC men’s tennis team.

The Tar Heels continued their march toward the National Championship on Sunday, becoming one of 16 teams left standing after their 4-0 victory over the Tulane Green Wave in the second round of the NCAA Team Tournament.

Despite a tough challenge from Tulane, which has the nation’s No. 3 ranked player, Dominik Koepfer, UNC’s depth ultimately provided the difference at the Cone-Kenfield Tennis Center–improving the Tar Heels’ record to 27-4 this season.

Tulane finishes its season with a mark of 16-9.

The Tar Heel duo of Robert Kelly and Brett Clark–the country’s No. 3 doubles team–defeated Koepfer and his teammate, Chi-Shan Jao, 6-4 to clinch the doubles point for UNC.

Anu Kodali, a freshman, played a part in two of UNC's four team points against Tulane. (Jeffrey A. Camarati)

Anu Kodali, a freshman, played a part in two of UNC’s four team points against Tulane. (Jeffrey A. Camarati)

By that time, Anu Kodali and Ronnie Schneider had already dispatched of Tulane’s Sebastian Rey and Ian Van Cott, finishing their doubles match with a 6-2 win–putting Kelly and Clark in position to put the Tar Heels on the board first.

Tulane, however, with Koepfer and Constantin Schmitz–ranked 99th in the nation–forced UNC’s Schneider and Brayden Schnur–each among the country’s top 30 players–into tight competition in the singles portion of the event.

Typically in singles competition the Tar Heels rely on Schnur and Schneider as two “guaranteed” points.

That’s where the depth came into play, as three other UNC players were able to finish off wins in their matches before the top-ranked foes could finish theirs .

Kodali was the first to pick up an individual win, defeating Tyler Schick 6-1, 6-2 to put the Tar Heels up 2-0–while Clark (6-1, 6-4) and Kelly (7-6, 6-0) finished up wins soon after to seal the team victory.

Up Next:

The Tar Heels now willl head to Tulsa–where they’ll face the Mississippi State Bulldogs on Friday, May 20 at 5:00 p.m.

Match Notes:

  • At the conclusion of the match Schnur was about to begin his 3rd set with Koepfer, with the score 4-6, 6-3.
  • Schneider and Schmitz were still in the second set, with Schneider ahead 7-6, 3-3.




UNC Men’s Tennis Advances Past College of Charleston

Looking to build off its title at the National Indoor Championships last fall, the No. 3 UNC men’s tennis team began its march through the NCAA Tournament with a 4-0 win over the College of Charleston Cougars.

The Tar Heels didn’t drop a single set in the match, as they improved to 26-4 this season–ending Charleston’s seven-match winning streak that included its first ever Colonial Athletic Association Championship.

The Cougars finish the season with a record of 19-7.

Jack Murray clinched the match for UNC with his 6-3, 6-0 win over Zack Lewis. (Jeffrey A. Camarati/ UNC Athletics)

Jack Murray clinched the match for UNC with his 6-3, 6-0 win over Zack Lewis. (Jeffrey A. Camarati/ UNC Athletics)

UNC’s top two players, Brayden Schnur and Ronnie Schneider, helped clinch the doubles point for the Tar Heels by teaming with Jack Murray and Anu Kodali.

Schnur and Murray defeated Charleston’s team of Vasily Kichigan and Josh Record 6-1, while Schneider and Kodali won their match against Zack Lewis and Charlie Ghriskey by a score of 6-3.

In the singles portion of the match–where six different matches are played simultaneously–UNC’s Robert Kelly was the first to clinch a victory after his dominating performance against Kichigan, in which he won 6-0, 6-1.

Schneider finished his match against Rodrigo Encinas–a 6-1, 6-1 blowout–soon after, while Murray didn’t need much longer to seal the deal.

The junior from Beverly Hills, Michigan knocked off Zack Lewis 6-3, 6-0 to send the Tar Heels through to Sunday’s second round.

Up Next:

Awaiting UNC on Sunday is the Tulane Green Wave (15-8), a group that defeated Dartmouth 4-0 early Saturday morning.

Game Notes:

  • UNC’s singles competitors not only won each of their first sets, they were each ahead in their second sets when the match was clinched, and thus stopped.




UNC Men’s Tennis Places 3 in Singles Tournament

Three members of the UNC men’s tennis team will be among the 64 participants in the NCAA Men’s Singles Tennis Championship. The invitations were announced Wednesday.

Senior Brett Clark is joined by Carolina juniors Ronnie Schneider and Brayden Schnur in receiving at-large selections to the tournament.

Clark will also be taking part in the doubles bracket with sophomore doubles partner Robert Kelly.

The singles and doubles tournament will take place following the conclusion of the team championship, in which UNC is the number two overall seed.

UCN will host the College of Charleston on May 14 in the first round of the team tournament.

The singles and doubles brackets will begin play on May 25 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

UNC Men’s Tennis Receives No. 2 NCAA Tournament Ranking

UNC men’s tennis is the number 2 overall seed in the 2016 NCAA Tournament.

The Tar Heels will host the first two rounds of the tournament May 14 and 15.

UNC will take on College of Charleston May 14 at noon.

Tickets are $5 per person and include all matches on a particular day. Children 6 and under are admitted free.
The Tar Heels are 25-4 this season and are currently ranked No. 3 nationally. They have advanced to the NCAA quarterfinals in each of the past two years.

Four Tar Heels Named All-ACC Tennis Players

Four members of the UNC men’s tennis team have been named to one of the All-ACC teams.

For the third year in a row,  juniors Ronnie Schneider and Brayden Schnur were named to the first team.

Senior Brett Clark was named to the second team, which now makes three years running.

Sophomore Robert Kelly earned his first All-ACC honor with a spot on the third team.

UNC was the only team with two members on the first team.

UNC Women’s Tennis Finish Second Straight Undefeated ACC Season

The UNC women’s tennis team finished off an undefeated conference season on Sunday with a win over No. 16 Georgia Tech.

The second-ranked Tar Heels knocked off the host Yellow Jackets by a 4-3 margin.

This is the second consecutive year that UNC finished the Atlantic Coast Conference schedule undefeated.

Georgia Tech jumped out to an early 2-0 lead before North Carolina clawed back to even the match at 2-2. The match eventually went to 3-3 with UNC senior Ashley Dai down a set. Dai mounted 6-3 and 6-2 victories to take the final two sets and claim her match and the overall victory for the Tar Heels.

UNC now goes into the ACC Championships at the Cary Tennis Center as the number one seed for the fourth consecutive year. UNC will receive a double bye and play in the quarterfinals at 10 o’clock Friday morning.

Meanwhile, the UNC men’s tennis team finished off the regular season schedule with a dominating 6-1 win at Duke on Sunday.

The fifth-ranked Tar Heels finished the regular season with a 24-3 record and a 9-3 mark in conference play.

UNC will go into the ACC Championships as the No. 4 seed, meaning the Tar Heels will receive a double bye and will begin tournament play at four o’clock Friday afternoon.

UNC Women’s Tennis Remains Undefeated in ACC Play

The North Carolina women’s tennis team is still undefeated in conference play after a pair of victories over the weekend.

The No. 2 Tar Heels improved to 12-0 on the season in Atlantic Coast Conference play with victories over Virginia Tech and Boston College.

UNC began the weekend with a trip to Blacksburg to take on the No. 30 Virginia Tech Hokies. Carolina and Va Tech were locked in a 3-3 tie and the deciding point came down to the match between UNC freshman Chloe Ouellet-Pizer and Virginia Tech senior Kelly Williford.

Williford won the opening set in a tiebreaker, but the Tar Heel rookie came back to capture the next two sets and, ultimately, another Carolina victory.

UNC finished out the weekend with a 6-1 win over Boston College on Sunday. The match marked Senior Day for UNC’s Ashley Dai, Whitney kay and Kate Vialle.

Carolina has two road matches between them and an undefeated conference season with a match at Clemson on Friday afternoon and Georgia Tech on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the North Carolina men’s tennis team entered play on Friday at No. 55 Notre Dame as the top-ranked team in the country, but Tar Heels fell behind the Fighting Irish 3-0 and were unable to come back.

The Tar Heels rallied for a 6-1 victory on the road over Boston College on Sunday afternoon to move UNC to 22-4 overall and 7-3 in conference play.

Carolina will play in its final home regular season match on Friday hosting Georgia Tech for Senior Day before travelling to Durham to finish off the regular season against the rival Blue Devils on Sunday.