When we last left our heroes...
The men gave fans a reason to chew their fingernails for a few minutes before slamming the door on a plucky Columbia team to win 4-0 and advance to a quarterfinal showdown with Texas A&M.
How'd it go?
No reason to chew your nails in this one. Virginia and Texas A&M split #1 and #3 doubles, but UVA was returning serve up 7-4 in the remaining doubles match. At break point, Thai-Son Kwiatkowski hit a ridiculous lob to clinch the doubles point for the Hoos. Keep in mind this event is in Texas, and there had to have been some Aggie fans taunting the UVA players, because Kwaitkowski's reaction to the win was cold as ice.
Seriously, check this out:
Unlike Columbia, Texas A&M did not come roaring back in singles to give Virginia a scare. The Hoos won five first sets in singles, and closed out at lines 4, 5, and 6 in less than 2 and a half hours (that's quick). So quick, that 30 minutes after Virginia clinched, the match to decide who they play was only tied 2-2.
The good news with this match is that every player was firing on all cylinders. Even Collin Altamirano, who got bombed in his first set rallied to force a third set. The Hoos flat out rolled to the win.
Virginnia is the lone semifinalist not from the Big 12.
The first semifinal is between Oklahoma and TCU. Oklahoma won the regular season match rather easily, and TCU has so far avoided a Top 10 team in the tournament. Expect the Sooners to return to the championship match.
Virginia's opponent will be Baylor, which is a daunting challenge. Baylor is playing at home, and has already defeated the Cavaliers twice this season. Virginia is playing great tennis right now, but consider the Bears to be slight favorites.