Thursday, September 27, 2018

Young Panthers Impress at Midd Invite; Next Up Hosting Fall ITA Regional

The 2018 Middlebury Invitational was an up and down experience for the Panthers this year, but with many highlights that deserve note. In A flight doubles, Farrell/Martin made a run to the semifinals displaying spots of brilliant tennis and demonstrating their potential to be one of the top teams in the nation if they play their best. Eazor/Cuba also notched their first win together as pair before losing in a tie-breaker to the eventual champions from Brandeis. Sutton/Gregory also posted a win in the B doubles flight. 

Nate Eazor '21 keeping his eye on the ball.
In D flight singles, freshmen Zach Hilty ’22 demonstrated that he is ready for prime-time action making a run to the semifinals before losing in a tough match tiebreaker in lieu of a third set. Not bad at all for his first college tournament. Cole Sutton ‘19 also posted a first round win for the Panthers.

In C flight singles, juniors Aleks Samets ‘20 and Weston Brach ’20 posted three wins combined, with Brach leading a charge to the semifinals. Both players have made significant strides in their games, and are primed to take another jump in level this year.

In B flight singles, the Panthers dominated the draw. Freshman David Vilys ’22 picked up his first collegiate victory in the first round. Sophomore Adam Guo ’21 and freshman Stanley Morris ’22 played each other in the semifinal round in one of the best-played matches in the whole tournament. Morris ’22 gutted out a third set match tiebreak victory over Guo ’21, and displayed an amazing resilience in close matches throughout his run to becoming the B flight singles champion! This is no easy feat as a freshman, and definitely sparked our group after the tournament to realize how deep the talent on our team runs this year. 

Freshman Spotlight: Get To Know Stanley Morris
Hometown: Santa Monica, California
Siblings: One younger sister
Favorite Food: Pasta
Favorite Hobby Outside of Tennis: Going to the beach
Pets: Two dogs (Golden Retriever named Kayla, King Charles Cavalier name Mia)
Favorite Pro Tennis Player: Roger Federer
Best Part About Being in Vermont: The beautiful nature
Favorite Thing About Middlebury College So Far: The people

Stanley Morris '22 put in a lot of sweat equity
on his road to winning the B flight!
A complete description of tournament results can be found here: http://athletics.middlebury.edu/sports/mten/2018-19/releases/20180916synjy7

To be sure, some of our veteran players were not yet at their sharpest during the Middlebury Invite this year, and have redoubled their efforts after the tournament with sharper motivation to get their play on track to their normal standard.

Andre Xiao '21 staying focused on putting in work.
Since the Invite, the Panthers have been honing their skills over the past two weeks in preparation for the ITA. We have definitely emphasized the technical side of the game, especially after a one-week visit from Guest Coach Morgan Shepherd (one of Coach Hansen’s former UCSC players who is an expert in stroke mechanics).

Our next tournament begins tomorrow, right at home in Middlebury! We are hosting the Fall ITA New England Regional for the second year in a row, and you can check out the draws here: http://athletics.middlebury.edu/sports/mten/2018-19/releases/20180926i5so3p

Reminder: Our Ring Ceremony will take place on October 20th at halftime of the homecoming Panther football game (vs Bates)! Please let us know if you are planning to join.

Very best wishes,
The Middlebury Men’s Tennis Coaching Staff

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