TCU Stumbles on Day One in New York

Trevor Johnson
Nov. 6, 2014

FORT WORTH, Texas - The TCU men's tennis team's run in the main draw of the singles and doubles bracket at the USTA/ITA Intercollegiate National Indoor Championships came to a close on Thursday at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, N.Y.

Cameron Norrie, Trevor Johnson, Nick Chappell and Will Stein all battled hard in their matches, but came up just short and will now move into the consolation brackets at the indoor championships.

Norrie opened the day for the Horned Frogs as the only TCU student-athlete in the singles bracket and went head-to-head with No. 98 Dominik Koepfer of Tulane. Koepfer was able to get an early break on Norrie in the first set, as the duo each held serve the rest of the set with the Green Wave ultimately coming out on top and took the first set 6-4.

The freshman was able to respond in the second set and opened by taking a break from Koepfer for a 3-0 lead. Koepfer was able to break Norrie back and even out the set at 4-4, as the two held serve for the next four games to send the set into a tiebreaker. Koepfer took the early lead in the tiebreaker was able to get a match point at 6-3, but Norrie responded by scoring three straight points to even out the tiebreaker at 6-6. Norrie faced a match point again at 7-6, but was bale to get two straight winners, as Koepfer's final shot went wide and Norrie took the tiebreaker 9-7 and the second set.

The third set began with a back-and-forth battle for points, with the two splitting points for a 2-2 set. Kopfer was able to hold serve and then broke Norrie to take a 4-2 lead in the set and never looked back as he won the final set 6-3 and took the match.

Norrie will now take part in the consolation draw of the singles bracket and will face No. 6 Jared Hiltzik of Illinois at Noon on Friday.

Norrie and Johnson would be up next for TCU in doubles, as the duo would have to face the No. 18 ranked pair of Henry Craig and Alex Gasson of Denver. The nationally ranked duo controlled the majority of the opening set and easily took the first set from the freshmen, 6-2.

The match turned even to begin the second set, as the two teams battled with TCU able to get an early break in the set. The last six points of set would be a different story, as Denver was able to break TCU three times, while the Horned Frogs broke the Pioneers three straight times. The set would come to a tie at 6-6 and send the set decision into a tiebreaker. Denver and TCU traded point-for-point in the tiebreaker, but the Frogs proved to have the final momentum needed as Johnson served up an ace to seal the victory in the tiebreaker, 8-6, and take the set.

The match decision would come down to a super tiebreaking third set, with Denver quickly gaining a mini break and held serve to take a 3-0 lead. Down 7-4, TCU had to slowly chip away at the gap and were able to even out the super tiebreaker at 7-7. The teams would tie one more time at 8-8, but Denver proved it had the closing power and won the final two points to take the set, 10-8, and the match.

Johnson and Norrie will now have to face the defending indoor national champions and No. 6 ranked Ashok Narayana and Max Schnur of Columbia in the first round of the consolation bracket on Friday at 5:30 p.m.

The No. 5 duo of Chappell and Stein were upset on the opening day of the indoor championships and were ousted out of the bracket by Tomislav Gregurovic and Tin Ostojic of Wichita State in the Sweet 16. TCU was able to get the early break in the opening set, but the Shockers came back to take the set in a tiebreaker, 7-6. Wichita State made very good shots and controlled the match from that point on and was able to capture the second set 6-3 to take the match.

Chappell and Stein move into the consolation bracket for doubles as the No. 2 seed and will face Luca Corinteli and Ryan Shane of Virginia in the opening round on Friday at 5:30 p.m.



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