Sunday, March 5, 2017

6 Days and Counting...

Visiting Coach Morgan Shepard and the Gang

Panther Family,

Six days and the Panthers will be going to battle with the Bobcats of Bates College. Since our last blog entry the boys of Midd have been putting in the work as we continue with one of our our main objectives which is to improve on a daily basis. The environment at practice has been energetic, competitive, and focused, allowing our boys to grow their skill set in preparation for the battles ahead.

Two weeks ago Morgan Shepard of California joined our team for a week of focused and inspirational training. Morgan played for Bob during his time at UC Santa Cruz and was a huge contributor to the slug tennis program on many levels. As a senior Morgan reached the finals of the NCAA’s in singles and lead his team to the National Championship match. He now runs a top-tier junior program in northern California and continues to be one of the top national players in his age group. Most importantly is Morgan’s passion in creating positive growth for the players he works with. He has become a very important member of this team over the years and we are very grateful to have him as such. We would like to extend a heart-felt thank you to Morgan for his work as we can already see the impact he has made with our boys.
Senior Captain Hamid Derbani

Meet the Player: Hamid Derbani

Hometown: Casablanca, Morocco

Year: Senior

Height: 6’0”

Weight: 178 LBS

Major: Economics (minor in mathematics)

Favorite tennis player growing up and why: Djokovic for his charisma and personality on court.

Favorite movie: The Italian Job.

Favorite food: (actual) Moroccan couscous.

Favorite Ben and Jerry’s ice cream flavor: Chocolate Fudge Brownie.

If you could travel anywhere in the world where would you go and why: Brazil for their culture, language, and beaches.

Why you chose Middlebury College: The combination of both academics and athletics.

Favorite Middlebury tennis moment thus far: Clinching in the finals of the NESCAC tournament last season.

Senior captain Hamid Derbani was a junior-college transfer from Texas who is entering his final season with the Middlebury Panthers. Early on he faced an extremely serious wrist injury which took him out of competition two years ago. Last season, after recovering from his injury, Hamid was a key member of our team demonstrating what he was capable of in both singles and doubles. He played number five singles for us and had one of the best records in the conference. He played number one doubles with then senior Palmer Campbell and eventually went on to reach the finals of the NCAA’s in doubles to conclude our 2016 season. He is an extremely hard worker with rock solid commitment to his tennis and to this team. With his massive serve and forehand, along with his ability to compete with almost anyone, Hamid will be one to watch and follow this upcoming 2017 season.

Lastly we would like to remind everyone of our alumni event that we will be hosting the weekend of April 8th and 9th. We will be playing two very strong NESCAC competitors that weekend (Williams & Tufts), and would love a huge turnout to get our alumni together. We are continuing to organize an alum dinner for that Saturday evening at American Flatbread-Middlebury, along with other pieces to make it an enjoyable overall weekend. Invitations will be going out soon so if you are interested and do not receive an email invitation within the next week or so please reach out to myself or Bob.

The next article will be posted after our opening match with Bates College. Please feel free to follow us on our Facebook, Instagram, twitter, and school website media sources. For those who are able to attend, the match is scheduled for 9am in our own Nelson Arena. We will keep you posted,


Middlebury Men’s Coaching Staff  

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