Men's Tennis Earns Dramatic Win Over Tufts

April 21, 2013

With the team score tied 4-4, Middlebury's Alex Johnston and Tufts' Nick Telkedzhiev played the #1 singles match into a third-set tie-breaker won by Johnston to ultimately give the Panthers a 5-4 victory in exciting NESCAC men's tennis action on Sunday.

Johnston had won the first set 6-4, but Telkedzhiev stayed alive with a 6-3 win in the second set. They needed a tie-breaker to decide it in the third set and Johnston was a 7-6 (5) winner. With the victory, the Panthers improved to 15-2 overall and 5-1 in the league, while Tufts is now 8-5 and 2-4.

Upstart Tufts gave ninth-ranked Middlebury all they could handle. The Panthers came out of doubles with a 2-1 lead. After the third doubles match finished 8-6 in favor of the Panthers, Johnson and Andrew Lebovitz combined for an 8-4 Panthers win at #1 doubles making it 2-0. Telkedzhiev and Mark Westerfield put Tufts on the board with an 8-4 victory at #2.

Middlebury’s lead grew to 3-1 with a 6-0, 6-2 win by Teddy Fitzgibbons at #3. Tufts won the next two matches to tie the match at 3-3 before Ari Smolyar gave his team a 4-3 advantage with a 6-2, 6-4 win at #5. Tufts took the #6 singles match, setting up the dramatic finish at #1.