Men's Tennis Headed To Championship Week - Follow Live Scoring
May 22, 2010
The Middlebury College men's tennis team is making its ninth consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament and eighth straight trip to the quarterfinal round. The Panthers will meet N.C. Wesleyan in a quarterfinal match on Tuesday, May 25th. Matches are taking place on Don Hunsinger Courts and are hosted by Oberlin College in Ohio.
The Middlebury men have won 16 straight matches entering the regional, boasting an impressive 20-2 record. The Panthers have won 17 or more matches for seven straight seasons, advancing to the final four in six of those seven seasons. Middlebury boasts a 24-9 record in NCAA Tournament play since '02, winning the national title in '04. The Panthers followed that title up with two consecutive trips to the national championship match. Middlebury has also won six NESCAC Championships, including a 6-0 win over Williams a week ago. Middlebury is currently the top-ranked team in the nation in the latest ITA poll.
The Panthers are led by seniors Eliot Jia (Mount Desert, Maine), Andrew Lee (Eden Prairie, Minn.), Conrad Olson (Waterloo, Belgium), Andrew Thomson (Bloomfield, Mich.) and junior Andrew Peters (Baltimore, Md.), who all earned first-team All-NESCAC honors this season. Lee was also named the NESCAC and ITA Northeast Player of the Year. Seniors Chris Mason (Owings Mills, Md.) and Peter Odell (Scarsdale, N.Y.) round out the Panther line-up.
A two-time All-NESCAC second-team singles selection in each of the last two years, Lee earned first-team singles honors for the first time in his career as he is 13-1 primarily at #2 for the Panthers with wins over every conference opponent he has faced this spring. His doubles play with Thomson has been equally impressive, going 16-2 in dual match action at #1 and winning both the ITA New England Regional and National Small College Championships in the fall. Thomson joined Lee in earning singles first-team honors during his final season in the league, as the 2007 Rookie of the Year is 12-1 mainly at #4 for Middlebury. He previously earned second-team singles and doubles in 2009 and first-team doubles in 2008. Peters rounded out the trio of Andrews from Middlebury on the All-Conference first-team with a singles nod. Peters is 11-3 in duals primarily at #1 and won the ITA New England Regional Championship over fellow Panther Thomson in three sets in September. He went on to finish as the runner-up at the ITA national tournament weeks later. Also from Middlebury on the All-NESCAC first-team were Olson and Jia. Olson, the 2006 NESCAC Rookie of the Year and the 2009 Co-Player of the Year, paired up with Jia, and are 15-3 since mid-March.
Thomson was the Northeast winner of the ITA's Arthur Ashe award. The award is given for leadership and sportsmanship, and goes to a player who has exhibited outstanding sportsmanship and leadership as well as scholastic, extracurricular and tennis achievements.
Now in his 10th season as head coach, Dave Schwarz owns a career record of 171-37 (.822) at Middlebury. He was recently named the NESCAC Coach of the Year for the fourth time and the ITA Northeast Regional Coach of the Year. After an 8-6 record during his rookie campaign, Schwarz has led the team to nine straight NCAA Tournament appearances, one NCAA title and six NESCAC crowns.
Following the team championships, Lee and Peters will compete in the NCAA singles championship, while Thomson/Lee will battle in doubles play. Thomson is also an alternate and may see action in singles play.
Middlebury's probable line-up: 1. Peters, 2. Lee, 3. Olson, 4. Thomson, 5. Jia, 6. Odell - 1. Lee/Thomson, 2. Jia/Olson, 3. Mason/Peters.
2010 NCAA Men's Tennis Championship - Oberlin College
Quarterfinals, Tuesday, May 25th
Middlebury (20-2) vs. N.C. Wesleyan (18-1) - 10:00 a.m.
Washington-St. Louis (19-4) vs. Carnegie Mellon (21-5) - 10:00 a.m.
Claremont-M-S (21-4) vs. Trinity (TX) (18-9) - 2:00 p.m.
Emory (16-7) vs. Amherst (25-10) - 2:00 p.m.
Semifinals, Wednesday, May 26th
Middlebury/N.C. Wesleyan winner vs. Washington-St. Louis/Carnegie Mellon winner - 1:00 p.m.
Claremont-M-S/Trinity winner vs. Emory/Amherst winner - 1:00 p.m.
NCAA Championship, Thursday, May 27th
Third place match - 12:00 p.m.
NCAA Championship - 1:00 p.m.