BUFFALO, NY – The Intercollegiate Tennis Association released their regional rankings late last week and the University at Buffalo's men's tennis senior duo of Vidit Vaghela and Petr Vodak were ranked sixth in the region, while the Bulls finished ninth as a team.
Considered to be one of the top regions in the nation, the Northeast Region comprises of the entire Ivy League. As a team, the Bulls finished ninth in the region, which was the highest amongst non-Ivy League schools as the eight programs in the Ivy's took the top eight spots. The Ivy League also comprised of 19 of the 20 ranked players in singles and eight of the 10 ranked teams in doubles.
Vodak and Vaghela were ranked sixth in the region, again the highest for programs not in the Ivy Leagues. They finished the year ranked 86th nationally as they ended their final season with a 15-4 record in doubles action, including going 12-4 at first doubles. They won their final ever match together in a 6-3 triumph over Jannik Opitz and Kennosuke Nouchi of Western Michigan in the MAC Championship.
Over the course of their record-breaking season, Vaghela and Vodak beat doubles teams from Notre Dame, Harvard, and Columbia, as well as winning the majority of their MAC matches during the regular season, except for two regular season losses to WMU, which they avenged in the MAC Finals.
Vodak and Vaghela become the first UB doubles team to be regionally ranked to finish a season since 2011 when Wojtek Starakiewicz and Mitch Zenaty finished 10th in the region.
The Bulls finished the year with a 13-10 record and a 5-2 mark in the Mid-American Conference, making it all the way to MAC Championship match again. UB played a tough schedule that featured five Ivy League opponents, including Columbia, Dartmouth, and Harvard, who all played in the NCAA Tournament. UB also faced Western Michigan three times over the course of the year, another tournament participant in 2018.
Despite that, Buffalo scored some big wins over the year, including a 4-3 win over St. John's, who finished 10th in the region and sweeps against UConn and Army. The Bulls also won all of their matches in the MAC against teams other than Western Michigan.
As a team, this is the fifth straight year that Buffalo has finished in the regional rankings.