Thursday, September 28, 2017

A Successful Middlebury Invitation Prepares Us For Hosting The ITA Regional Tournament

The Panthers had a blast competing on our home courts, and took the opportunity to build on the historical dominance of Middlebury at our own invitational. Lubomir Cuba picked up where he left off last season by winning the A flight singles draw and demonstrating some gritty performances along the way. In the quarterfinals, he took down Rohan Gupte (a top of the lineup player from Tufts) 6-4, 7-5. Playing his own doubles partner, Will de Quant, in the semifinals, Lubo battled back after losing the first set to win 2-6, 7-6(5), 10-5. de Quant definitely seems to be sharpening his game at the right time leading up to the ITA pushing Lubo to the brink at the Midd Invite. In the finals, Lubo squared off with the #14 ranked player in the nation from Bates, Ben Rosen. Rosen was playing some incredibly high level tennis, having beaten Midd’s own Noah Farrell in the semifinals along his route to the finals. However, his run came to end when Lubo stepped in and smashed an inside in forehand return winner to post a 6-3, 4-6, 10-8 victory.

Lubo staying focused during the big moments.

Two Panther seniors Kyle Schlanger and Timo Van der Geest won the A flight doubles.  This marked the second year in a row that Schlanger took home to the hardware from this event. Timo and Kyle won their first two rounds relatively easily, and then took down the #1 doubles team in the nation, their own teammates Cuba and de Quant.  After being down 5-7, Timo and Kyle buckled down and played some of their best tennis of the match to win 9-7. Timo and Kyle continued their comeback ways in the finals and won 8-6 after being down a break. Their ability to enjoy their tennis the most when the match was at pivotal moments allowed them to thrive under pressure.

Schlanger is now a two-time Midd Invite A Doubles Champ! 
Timo took it to the house in both A flight doubles and B flight singles.

Helping to set our sights on this weekend, here is a brief historical overview of past Middlebury ITA Regional Champions.

Middlebury Fall Regional ITA Champions Since 2004
2004 Doubles: Kevin Bergesen and George Mayer
2004 Singles: Brian Waldron
2005 Doubles: Kevin Bergesen and Nate Edmunds
2005 Singles: Brian Waldron
2006 Doubles: Alex Scott and George Mayer
2006 Singles: Alex Scott
2007 Doubles: Fil Marinkovic and Andrew Thomson
2008 Singles: Conrad Olson
2009 Doubles: Andrew Lee and Andrew Thomson
2009 Singles: Andrew Peters
2015 Singles: Noah Farrell
2016 Singles: Lubomir Cuba

Conrad Olson 2008 ITA Regional Singles Champ!
Another highlight of the tournament for Middlebury was the dominance of the B Singles flight. Andre Xiao made the semifinals of the draw and beat a very talented Russian freshman from Tufts along the way, before losing to Timo in the semis. Alex Vanezis made a great run to the finals posting a 6-0, 6-0 victory in the semis and defeating Travis Leaf from Skidmore who had bested him last season. In the finals, Timo triumphed 0-6, 6-2, 11-9 in an absolute war of a match (saving one match point) over Vanezis. These experiences will serve our team well as we prepare to make some deep runs in the ITA draw this weekend.

Thanks for reading and as always, we appreciate all the support from the Midd Tennis Family. Please check this link to follow along as we compete in the ITA Regional Tournament over the next three days:

Go Midd!

Until next time,
The Middlebury Men’s Tennis Coach Staff

Thursday, September 21, 2017

First Up, The Middlebury Invitational: Preparing for Fall Tournament Season

Middlebury fall tennis season is in full swing! We are fast approaching four weekends in a row of tournament action! Getting some additional press, the Middlebury College newspaper recently released a fantastic article about Will de Quant and Lubomir Cuba, detailing their individual national championships as well as providing insight into the engaging personalities of these two team leaders.  Please click this link to check out the article:

Over the past two weeks, the team has been hard at work shaking off any rusty aspects of our games leftover from the summer break. On the courts we have been attempting to use a balanced approach to establish good habits in the basic aspects of our stroke production, challenging our skills in competitive games, and then last weekend competing in an intrasquad Blue/White match where the coaches were pleased to see the Panthers sharpening their competitive edges. We will need to bring everything we have this coming weekend as all thirteen members of the Panther squad (aside from Cole Sutton who is currently studying abroad in Madrid, Spain) will compete in the Middlebury Invitational this Saturday and Sunday (9/23 and 9/24). Match play begins at 9am on both days for anyone who is interested in coming out to support. If you are following along from afar, results will be updated here: Middlebury Invitation will be a fun event that will hopefully prepare our squad for the ITA Regional that we are  hosting right here in Middlebury the very next weekend (9/29, 9/30, and 10/1). 

As can be seen below, the Middlebury Panthers have dominated their own invitational since results have been archived dating back to 2002.  The current panther squad will look to expand on the illustrious history created by some phenomenal Midd tennis beasts!

Nate Edmunds ('06) was an A Flight Singles Champion in 2002 and 2004
and an A Flight Doubles Champion in 2002, 2004, and 2005

Brian Waldron ('06) was an A Flight Singles Champion in 2003, 2004, and 2005
and an A Flight Doubles Champion in 2004 and 2005

A Brief History of the Middlebury Invitational A Flight
Singles Winner
Singles Finalist
Doubles Winners
Edmunds (Midd)
Burke (Bow)
Hulce/Beilin (Midd) co-champs
Waldron (Midd)
Edmunds (Midd)
Brown/Ingoglia (Midd)
Waldron/Mayer (Midd)
Edmunds/Waldron Beilin/Scott (Midd) co-champs
Edmunds/Waldron (Midd)
Beilin/Waldron (Midd) co-champs
Alex Scott (Midd)
Marsden (Trin)
Marinkovic/Olson Scott/Mayer (Midd) co-champs
Gates (Bow)
Stein (Bates)
Marinkovic/Thomson (Midd)
Sullivan (Bow)
Stein (Bates)
Brown/Chin (Colby)
Thomson (Midd)
Pena (Bow)
Rupasinghe/Bettles (Bates)
Peters (Midd)
Bonfiglio (Trin)
Rifkin/Newton (Ith)
Parower (Midd)
Jones (Midd)
Jones/Lebovitz (Midd)
Cramptom (Bates)
Bettles (Bates)
Crampton/Bettles (Bates)
Fitzgibbons (Midd)
Glickman (Tufts)
Mountifield/Smolyar (Midd)
Smolyar (Midd)
Farrell (Midd)
Planche/Ellis (Bates)
Farrell (Midd)
Granoff (Brandeis)
Grimes/Uyeno (RPI)
Farrell (Midd)
Leung (Skidmore)
Derbani/Schlanger (Midd)

Teddy Fitzgibbons ('14) was an A Flight Singles Champion in 2013.

Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more blog updates as the results from our fall events start rolling in.  We truly appreciate the Midd Tennis Almuni and Family Network support! 

Go Midd!

- The Middlebury Men’s Tennis Coach Staff