|Midd boys on match day against Bates|
The 3rd ranked Panthers of Middlebury Men’s Tennis came out swinging last weekend with an 8-1 victory over Bates College. Before we look ahead to this upcoming weekend of matches we would like to do a brief recap of this solid season-opening effort. With the decision to sit senior Hamid Derbani due to a minor injury, new faces were put into the lineup. Being put into competition last minute isn’t easy and we coaches were very impressed with how our boys adapted.
We put ourselves in a hole early against some strong doubles teams of Bates College. At third doubles Allen and Timo went down an early break and were not able to recover. They fought to the very end but lost with a score of 8-4. At two doubles Peter Martin and Kyle Schlanger were on serve most of the match until facing a break in the middle of their pro-set. Around the same time Will and Lubo went up a break only to get broken back as the match intensity rose on both courts. Lubo and Will went on to break again and close out their top doubles match with a firm 8-5 victory. Tied 1-1 the only doubles spot remaining was our two team of Peter and Kyle as Bates served for the match at 7-6. Major props to both Peter and Kyle who played a fantastic break game to keep them in the match. A solid hold later and now Bates was serving to stay in the match at 7-8. With some solid returns and clutch play, Pete and Kyle went on to break and put the Panthers up 2-1 overall going into the singles.
First off was a fantastic match played by Timo at number four singles. With a 6-1, 6-2 victory Timo maintained a very high level of play from start to finish, attacking his opponent from both the baseline and finishing at the net. Kyle was next off with a straight set victory at number three singles. Up a set but down 4-1 in the second, Kyle went on to refocus and claim five straight games to clinch his match 6-1, 6-4. The overall match was clinched for the Panthers by our top singles player Lubomir Cuba. Lubo played a very tough opponent in Ben Rosen, but managed the momentum swings of the match very well with a 6-4, 6-2 victory. Next off was senior Allen Jackson who played simply amazing tennis from start to finish with a 6-1, 6-1 victory. Allen’s road to get to this point has been long and tough, and both coaches and players were very happy to see him put forth such a dominant performance. Number two singles Will DeQuant came off next after toughing out a very tricky match in a third set super breaker against his Bates opponent 6-0, 6-7 (9), 10-8 (ST). Will showed some great composure in not letting frustration get the best of him, putting himself in position to take the match when given the opportunity. Last off was freshman Alex Vanezis at six singles with a 6-1, 6-3 victory. Alex played extremely well for most of his first match as a Panther and should be extremely proud of his effort. Looking back, it was a great start to the season with many highlights and lessons to be learned, thanks to everyone who came out to support us.
Meet the Player: Aleksandr (Aleks) Samets
Major: Undecided (Econ/Comp Sci)
Favorite tennis player growing up and why:
Marat Safin, Incredible player. Could not be beat when he was on.
Favorite movie: War Dogs
Favorite food: Sushi
Favorite Ben and Jerry’s ice cream flavor: Cookies and Cream
If you could travel anywhere in the world where would you go and why:
The Netherlands. I’ve never been and would love to explore.
Why you chose Middlebury College:
Incredible liberal arts education at a school that is a great fit for me.
Favorite Middlebury tennis moment thus far:
Playing the Midd Invite at home. Great atmosphere.
Aleks is one of our three freshman that we have on the team this year. He is a very strong athlete and skilled player who has been taking on all training, conditioning, and lifting we have thrown at him without complaint. He has already had some breakthrough moments with his tennis this season and we cannot wait to see where he takes his moving forward. Eager to learn and selfless with his teammates, Aleks is an addition to this team that we coaches are very grateful for.
This upcoming Saturday we will be hosting Brandeis University at 9:30am. We will then get on the road to play RPI that next Sunday morning at 9am at their courts, before driving to play Skidmore at their home courts that afternoon at 3pm . It is going to be a very testing weekend the us, but getting comfortable at being uncomfortable is an essential piece of our training. We will keep you posted,
Middlebury Men's Coaching Staff
Middlebury Men's Coaching Staff