Men’s tennis (13–4, 6–1 in the NESCAC) lost to Middlebury on Saturday in the conference semifinals.
The first signs that the match would not go the Ephs’ way came in the No. 1 doubles match. Although tri-captain Brian Grodecki ’18 and Ananth Raghavan ’20 played admirably in their first match together this season and forced a tiebreak, they could not wrap the match up, losing 7-3. The teams then split the next two, giving the top-ranked team in the nation a 2-1 lead.
The men could not get it going in singles, giving Middlebury a lopsided victory.
The Panthers won the No. 1, No. 3 and No. 4 matches, giving them the victory and therefore stopping the rest of the matches in their tracks. In each of the stopped matches, the momentum was swung towards Williams. Austin Barr ’21 and Deepak Indrakanti ’19 looked like they would grab a game back after losing their first sets, while Arturo Kam ’21 was only one game away from winning his match. Kam also won in doubles with Jordan Sadowsky ’18.
“[It] was tough,” head coach Dan Greenberg ’08 said. “Doubles could have gone either way, and unfortunately, we weren’t mentally ready to bounce back in singles.”
Despite the loss, the men were selected for an at-large bid for the NCAA tournament. They will host the NCAA Regional rounds this weekend.
Play will begin at the Torrence M. Hunt ’44 Tournament Courts on Friday. The regional champion will be decided by Sunday.
“We are thrilled for such an awesome opportunity,” Greenberg said. “We know how tough it is to qualify for NCAAs, especially from this conference, so we’re preparing to make the most of it.”
The Ephs will graduate Grodecki, Sadowsky, Rehaan Vij ’18 and tri-captain Sachin Raghavan ’18 at the season’s end.