PASADENA, Calif. (Feb. 14, 2015) - Sophomore Sathwick Pathireddy (Irvine, Calif. / Whitney) won both doubles and singles to propel the Caltech men's tennis team to an early lead before falling, 6-3, to Occidental College in a non-conference match on Saturday afternoon.
With junior Rushikesh Joshi (Sunnyvale, Calif. / Archbishop Mitty) unavailable for the Beavers, only their first doubles team remained intact in a lineup shuffle. As a result, Oxy went ahead immediately with an 8-1 victory at #2 doubles against the Beavers' regular #3 team. Caltech trailed by a break at #3 but got back on serve midway through the match, while #1 doubles held serve straight through, but both would record dramatic victories. Sophomore Morgan Lebby (Laguna Beach, Calif. / Laguna Beach) and junior Leonardo Zornberg (Austin, Texas / Liberal Arts and Science Acad.) tied things up at 7-7 before taking the final two games to level the match and Pathireddy paired with his brother, Ruthwick Pathireddy (Irvine, Calif. / Whitney), to force a breaker at #1, which the twins won, 9-8 (7-4) to take a 2-1 lead into singles play.
Oxy quickly regained the lead as singles play got underway, sweeping court #6 (6-0, 6-0) and taking #4 (6-2, 6-3). The Tigers' #5 rallied from a 4-2 deficit to take the first set and cruise to the win (6-4, 6-1), bringing Oxy within one point of clinching the match.
Caltech, meanwhile, led by a set at the three remaining courts, including a dramatic tiebreak between the rivals' #1s. Sathwick Pathireddy soon closed out #2 singles with a 6-2, 6-4 win to bring the match score to 4-3 in Oxy's favor, but the Beavers could not get over the hump as the Tigers rallied at both #1 and #3 to leave with the victory.
Head Coach Mandy Gamble and the Beavers will host Whittier College (0-0) on Saturday, Feb. 21 at 10:00 a.m.