The Virginia men's tennis team last lost to an ACC foe on April 23rd, 2006: a 4-3 loss to Duke in the finals of the ACC Championship. Eleven days shy of the seven year anniversary of that loss, they celebrated their 100th consecutive victory, defeating Clemson 4-0.
In recognition of this impressive feat, we at Streaking the Lawn wanted to take a look back at all the things that have occurred in between. Needless to say, a lot of good things have happened.
- Virginia has had six consecutive undefeated conference regular seasons from 2007 to 2012. Of course, they're on their way to a seventh undefeated slate. They are 7-0 currently and would finish 10-0 by beating Georgia Tech, Florida State and Miami over the next ten days. That's one win less than the previous six seasons, because Maryland already got rid of their men's tennis team.
- Of the 100 ACC wins, only nine have been by the narrowest 4-3 margin. By comparison, Virginia has six ACC wins by a 6-1 margin or better just this season.
- To go along with the conference regular season wins, they've also won six consecutive conference tournament championships.
- During those six conference tournament championships, Virginia has outscored its opponents 73-7. No single match was closer than 4-2 and in no year did Virginia allow more than 3 points total.
- Virginia's overall record is 217-12 since the loss to Duke in 2006 for an unbelievable 94.76% winning percentage over nearly seven years.
- Those twelve losses have come to only six teams: Georgia (4x), Southern Cal (4x), Baylor, Texas, Kentucky and Ohio State. Baylor, Texas and Kentucky are the only teams to beat Virginia during the regular season during that stretch.
- Virginia has won five National Team Indoor titles (2008-2011, 2013). While these are not official NCAA Championships, they are still national titles. Georgia (2007) and Ohio State (2012) knocked Virginia out of the NTI the two years they didn't win during the streak.
- Virginia reached the NCAA Quarterfinals twice, the Semifinals three times and the Finals twice during that stretch. The two Finals appearances have been the two most recent seasons.
- Of course, the one thing missing is an NCAA Championship. Hopefully this year is the year!
- Virginia did have some non-team NCAA Champions, though. Somdev Devvarman won back-to-back NCAA singles Championships in 2007 and 2008. He was the first ACC player to ever win the singles title.
- The Cavaliers followed up the singles championships with back-to-back NCAA doubles championships. Dominic Inglot and Michael Shabaz won in 2009, while Shabaz teamed up with Drew Courtney to win in 2010.
- An amusing (for Virginia fans at least) sidenote to the above national titles: Tennessee's John-Patrick Smith lost to Devvarman in the 2008 national title match. He was then part of the doubles team that lost to both Cavalier pairs in '09 and '10. Smith must have a very sour taste in his mouth every time he hears about Virginia.
- Eleven players were named ITA All-Americans a total of 28 times during the streak: Devvarman (3x Singles, 2x Doubles), Nick Meythaler (Doubles), Rylan Rizza (Doubles), Treat Huey (2x Doubles), Dominic Inglot (2x Singles, Doubles), Michael Shabaz (2x Singles, 3x Doubles), Sanam Singh (2x Singles), Drew Courtney (3x Doubles), Alex Domijan (2x Singles), Jarmere Jenkins (Singles, Doubles) and Mitchell Frank (Singles).
- Devvarman was named ITA National Player of the Year in 2007 and 2008.
- Two Cavaliers - Alex Domijan in 2011 and Mitchell Frank in 2012 - were named ITA National Freshman of the Year.
- Two Virginia players had their jerseys retired. Devvarman was the first, having his jersey retired on January 23, 2009. Brian Vahaly, an All-American who graduated in 2001, had his jersey retired almost two years later on January 21, 2011.
- Virginia Head Coach Brian Boland was named ITA National Coach of the Year in 2008.
So what's next for the Virginia men's tennis team? Well, the season isn't over. They celebrate senior day tomorrow at noon against Georgia Tech, then they finish their regular season on the road against Florida State (4/19 at 3pm) and Miami (4/21 at 11am). The ACC Tournament begins April 25th in Cary, N.C. though Virginia will almost certainly have a first-round bye.
Beyond that, the Cavaliers have some other streaks to target. According to Michael Phillips over at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the Duke women's tennis team had a 116-match ACC winning streak from 1989-2000. It's unclear what other streaks - in the ACC or nationally - may be in their sights.