Vanderbilt's men's tennis team became only the third team in school history to reach an NCAA Final Four event, as the seventh-seeded Commodores upset second-seeded Baylor 4-0 Sunday afternoon at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens, Ga. The Commodores advance to meet the UCLA-Florida winner at noon ET Monday (11 a.m. CT) in the semifinals.
Sunday's win in the Elite Eight, which came with surprising ease, continued an astonishing, history-making run for Ken Flach's Commodores. Vanderbilt (26-3), which had never even made the NCAA Tournament before this year, has suddenly won four NCAA Tournament matches in a row in reaching the semifinal round. The Commodores defeated another Big XII opponent, Texas A&M, on Saturday to advance the quarterfinals.
Overall, the Commodores have won 12 matches in a row since a March 30 loss to Tulane in New Orleans. For Coach Matt Knoll's Big XII champion Baylor Bears (28-2), the loss was only the second of the year.
Inclement weather forced Saturday's quarterfinal match indoors from Henry Fields Stadium. Vanderbilt captured the all-important doubles point-- as it has now done in 24 of 29 matches on the year-- as Chad Harris and Matt Lockin defeated Benjamin Becker and Zoltan Papp 8-3 at the No. 2 position, and Zach Dailey and Lewie Smith defeated Baylor's Matias Marin and Ivor Lovrak 8-3 at No. 3 doubles.
Matt Lockin was the first Commodore off the court, as he handled Papp 6-1, 6-2 at No. 3 singles. Top-seeded Bobby Reynolds split sets with Baylor's Benjamin Becker and was struggling in a tough third set, but it ultimately didn't matter.
Harris finished off Benedikt Dorsch at No. 2 singles, 7-6, 3-6, 6-2; and Scott Brown clinched the victory for Vanderbilt with a 7-5, 2-6, 7-5 win at No. 4. Due to a shortage of courts in the indoor arena, Vandy's Lewie Smith never had to play at No. 6 singles, while Zach Dailey's game at No. 5 was stopped, tied 2-2 in only the first set.
Should Vanderbilt win again on Monday, it would advance to the NCAA Championship match, scheduled for Tuesday at 4 p.m. ET (3 p.m. CT).