From the beginning of the ITA Regionals Tournament last weekend, men’s tennis showed its determination to play hard against some of the top competition in the country from all of the NESCAC schools.
“It was our first tournament, and it was a good starting point to show us where we’re strong and what we need to keep working on,” co-captain Jeremy Weinberger ’10 said.
Although some of the players lost in the first round, many of the men battled deep into the tournament. Notably, Felix Sun ’13 made it to the semifinals after battling in back-to-back three set matches in the round of 16 and the quarterfinals. After winning the first and third sets in the round of 16, Sun had another epic victory in the quarterfinals over Amherst No. 1 Austin Chafetz. Sun won the first set 6-3, dropped the second 2-6, and controlled the third set 6-3 to win the match. “One of the highlights was watching Felix battle through two three-set matches in a row,” Weinberger said.
Weinberger himself advanced to the quarterfinals where he played a close match with Middlebury No. 4 Andrew Thomson. After losing the first set 1-6, he rebounded to take the second set 6-3. Ultimately, however, he lost 3-6 in the third, leaving Sun as the only Eph left in the singles tournament.
Sun then faced Thomson, but Thomson’s momentum combined with Sun’s inexperience in collegiate tournaments ultimately handed the win to the Panther in two sets.
A few of the Eph doubles teams had surprising runs in the tournament as well. Although the pair of Dickin Chaplin ’12 and Will Petrie ’12 was unseeded, they completely destroyed the Bates No. 2 doubles team 8-2. Petrie and Chaplin then played perfect tennis to defeat 2009 NCAA doubles champion Amrit Rupasinghe and his partner, first-year Matt Bettles of Bates. “It was the match of dreams,” Chaplin said.
Unfortunately their run ended in the quarterfinals when Trinity’s first doubles, the No. 3-seeded team in the tournament, defeated Petrie and Chaplin 4-8.
“Our strength is the depth we have,” Weinberger said. “Even our players who lost in the first few rounds were great competitors, and our doubles players looked strong.”
Head Coach Dan Greenberg felt that the men executed well in the tournament, but there were still some kinks to work out. “Everything we’ve been working on in practice, we did in the tournament; we just need to do these things better, which we will with more practice and match experience,” Greenberg said. “With the Dartmouth Shootout next weekend and then a month to work with the team before the off-season, I think we can have a very productive fall.”
Williams will have a great opportunity to get match experience this weekend as it will compete against top Div. I talent at Dartmouth.