The Middlebury College men's tennis teams won its fifth NESCAC Championship in the last six years with a 5-3 win over Amherst at Williams. The Panthers receive an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament and will find out their fate when the pairings are announced on Monday. Middlebury moves to 19-2 overall, earning its eleventh consecutive win.
The Panthers' top player Conrad Olson eked out a third set tiebreaker, 10-8, to take the decisive fifth point over Amherst's Zach Lerner to clinch the win. Lerner ended up on the wrong end of tie-breaks this afternoon, also falling in #1 doubles in a 7-3 tiebreak. The win at number one doubles by David Farah and Andrew Thomson was critical, as Amherst swept the bottom two doubles matches for a 2-1 advantage heading into singles play.
Middlebury played brilliant singles play to swing the momentum back their way. Elliot Jia took a quick win at court six, 6-1, 6-2, while Andrew Peters followed at court four with a 6-2, 6-2 victory. Amherst's lone singles win came on court two, where Austin Chafetz won in straight sets over Middlebury's Andrew Thompson - 6-4, 6-2.
With the match knotted at three apiece, Andrew Lee captured a win at court three while the matches at courts one and five headed into their third sets. The battle at court one was an exciting finish as Olson sealed the victory and the NESCAC championship for Middlebury.
Middlebury 5, Amherst 3
1) Farah/Thomson (M) def. Lerner/Koenig (A) --- 9-8(3)
2) Gross/Chafetz (A) def. Bonfiglio/Lee (M) --- 8-5
3) Waterman/Jung (A) def. Olson/Peters (M) --- 8-5
1) Olsen (M) def. Lerner (A) --- 7-5, 4-6, 7-6(8)
2) Chafetz (A) def. Thompson (M) --- 6-4, 6-2
3) Lee (M) def. Jung (A) --- 6-2, 7-5
4) Peters (M) def. Koenig (A) --- 6-2, 6-2
5) Gross (A) def. Odell (M) - 7-6(5), M 6-4, 7-6(4)*
6) Jia (M) def. Waterman (A) --- 6-1, 6-2
*Matched had already been decided.