EVANSTON, Ill. -- No. 18 Northwestern cruised in both of its matches on Sunday, defeating Big Ten foe Iowa 7-0 before blanking Western Illinois 6-0.
Against the visiting Hawkeyes, Northwestern got on the board right away, claiming the doubles point.. At No. 1, the Wildcats' duo of Raleigh Smith and Sidarth Balaji made relatively quick work of their opponents, Michael Swank and Garret Dunn, winning 8-5. Spencer Wolf and Fedor Baev, playing at No. 3, trailed 7-5 and faced match point before coming back to score four straight points and defeat Joey White and Chase Tomlins, 9-7. The win at No. 3 clinched the first point for the `Cats. Playing at No. 2, Mihir Kumar and Alex Pasareanu pushed their competitors, Jonas Dierckx and Matt Hagan to a tiebreaker but ultimately fell 9-8 (6).
Chris Jackman, playing at No. 6 singles, made quick work of his opponent, Dominic Patrick, in straight sets 7-5, 6-1. Jackman opened up a 4-0 lead in the first set before Patrick mounted a comeback but was held off by Jackman for the 7-5 set win. At No. 5 singles, Pasareanu staved off comeback efforts by Swank in both sets but prevailed 7-5, 6-4. Wolf clinched the dual match for Northwestern with his 6-4, 6-2 victory at No. 1 over Hagan. Wolf won the last three points of each set to down Hagan.
At No. 2, Smith used a quick 5-0 lead to win the first set and clinched the match in a second set tiebreaker, taking down Dierckx 6-2, 7-6 (2). Kumar used his energy to propel himself to a 6-4, 6-3 victory at No. 4, defeating Juan Estenssoro. Kumar trailed only once by one in either set. Playing at No. 3, Balaji gave the `Cats a clean team sweep, winning an exciting third-set tiebreaker on his way to a 2-6, 6-3, 7-6 (4) victory to extend the team score to 7-0 in favor of Northwestern.
In the nightcap, the Wildcats and the Leathernecks opted to only compete in singles. Northwestern had little trouble as all six matches were decided in straight sets.
Smith dominated at No. 1 as he didn't surrender a single game. Jackman was the second to finish at No. 6 as he posted a 6-2, 6-3 victory. Balaji brought the Wildcats within one win of the match victory as he posted a 6-2, 6-2 triumph at No. 3 before Pasareanu clinched things at No. 4 with a 6-2, 6-3 win.
NU also got victories from Mihir Kumar, who won 6-3, 6-2 at No. 3, and Alberto Zanotti who was a 6-4, 6-1 victor at No. 6.
Northwestern takes a break before returning to action on Saturday, March 30 at Minnesota.
#18 Northwestern 7, Iowa 0
a 1. Raleigh Smith / Sidarth Balaji (NU) def. Michael Swank / Garret Dunn (Iowa) - 8-5
2. Jonas Dierckx / Matt Hagan (Iowa) def. Mihir Kumar / Alex Pasareanu (NU) - 9-8 (6)
3. Spencer Wolf / Fedor Baev (NU) def. Joey White / Chase Tomlins (Iowa) - 9-7
Order of finish: 1, 3*, 2
1. No. 120 Spencer Wolf (NU) def. Matt Hagan (Iowa) - 6-4, 6-2
2. Raleigh Smith (NU) def. Jonas Dierckx (Iowa) - 6-2, 7-6 (2)
3. Sidarth Balaji (NU) def. Garret Dunn (Iowa) - 2-6, 6-2, 7-6 (4)
4. Mihir Kumar (NU) def. Juan Estenssoro (Iowa) - 6-4, 6-3
5. Alex Pasareanu (NU) def. Michael Swank (Iowa) - 7-5, 6-4
6. Chris Jackman (NU) def. Dominic Patrick (Iowa) - 7-5, 6-1
Order of finish: 6, 5, 1*, 2, 4, 3
#18 Northwestern 6, Western Illinois 0
1. Raleigh Smith (NU) def. Christoph Haertel (WIU) 6-0, 6-0
2. Sidarth Balaji (NU) def. Patrick Hammers (WIU) 6-2, 6-2
3. Mihir Kumar (NU) def. Bradley Holt (WIU) 6-3, 6-2
4. Alex Pasareanu (NU) def. Ben Yue (WIU) 6-2, 6-3
5. Chris Jackman (NU) def. Mitch Granger (WIU) 6-2, 6-3
6. Alberto Zanotti (NU) def. Max Cederkall (WIU) 6-4, 6-1
Order of finish: 1, 5, 2, 4*, 3, 6