By Blake Moore
ADA — Sophomore Vinh Thai (Galloway/St. Charles) and freshman Noah Elliott (Hilliard/Davidson) were each double-winners Wednesday afternoon at the University Tennis Courts, leading the Ohio Northern men's tennis team in a 5-4 loss to Ohio Athletic Conference foe Otterbein.
With the loss, the Polar Bears fall to 12-7 overall and drop their first conference match (5-1) this season. Meanwhile, the Cardinals improve to 16-3 overall and own a similar 5-1 league record.
Thai and Elliott teamed up for an 8-6 victory at No. 1 doubles over OU's Brandon Wall and Jared Deel, preventing an Otterbein sweep in doubles play. The former went on to defeat Wall 6-4, 5-7, 10-7 at No. 1 singles while the latter upended the Cardinals' Connor Radune 7-6 (7-2), 6-4 on the No. 2 court.
Sophomore Hoang Do (Powell/Olentangy Liberty) picked up the remaining victory with a 7-5, 7-6 (10-8) triumph over Tyler Wharton at No. 3 singles.
The Cardinals jumped out to a quick 2-0 advantage after sweeping the No. 2 and No. 3 courts in doubles play. Thai and Elliott broke up the early run with their No. 1 victory to make the lead 2-1 through doubles action.
Otterbein went on to capture the first three singles matches in the No. 6, No. 4, and No. 5 slots, respectively, to clinch the league victory before the Polar Bears rattled off three wins to end the evening.
Ohio Northern will return to action this Saturday afternoon with a trip to league-leading John Carroll for its 2018-19 regular season finale. Match time is set for 1 p.m. in University Heights.