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Fourth-Seeded Men’s Tennis Falls to Top-Seeded Middlebury in NESCAC Semifinals, 5-2

Photo by Kalamazoo Sports Info
Photo by Kalamazoo Sports Info

Recap courtesy of Bates Sports Information

LEWISTON, Maine -- Top-seeded Middlebury defeated No. 4 seed Wesleyan 5-2 in the first semifinal of the 2016 NESCAC Men's Tennis Championship Saturday night at Bates College. 

The Panthers (15-2) won their eighth straight match and remain undefeated against conference opponents this season. They will play in Sunday's championship match on Sunday indoors at the Portland Racquet & Fitness Center. Middlebury will face the winner of Saturday's second semifinal between No. 6 Amherst and No. 2 Bowdoin. It will be Middlebury's third straight appearance in the final. 

Wesleyan (13-6) scored the first point of the match with Joachim Samson and Sam Rudovsky's 8-3 victory at third doubles over Middlebury duo William de Quant and Kyle Schlanger. Middlebury answered and took the lead with Ari Smolyar and Noah Farrell's 8-2 victory at second doubles over Michael Liu and Steven Chen, followed closely by Palmer Campbell and Hamid Derbani's 8-6 victory over Zacko Brint and Greg Lyon at first doubles. 

The Cardinals scored first again in singles play, as Cameron Daniels defeated Hamid Derbani 6-4, 6-1 at No. 5.  But Middlebury rattled off three straight points to claim the victory. Schlanger defeated Jake Roberts 7-5, 6-2, followed by de Quant's 1-6, 6-3, 6-4 triumph over Samson at third singles. Farrell ended the match at first singles, leaving two matches unfinished, as Farrell defeated Chen 4-6, 7-6 (6), 6-2. 

Middlebury had won 5-4 at home against Wesleyan in their previous meeting on March 19.

Friday, May 6 – at Bates 
First Round Matches 
No. 4 Wesleyan 5, No. 5 Tufts 3 
No. 6 Amherst 5, No. 3 Williams 3 

Saturday, May 7 – at Bates 
Second Round Matches 
No. 1 Middlebury 5, No. 4 Wesleyan 2 
No. 2 Bowdoin vs. No. 6 Amherst – 4:30 p.m. 

Sunday, May 8 – at Portland Racquet & Fitness Center 
No. 1 Middlebury vs. No. 2 Bowdoin/No. 6 Amherst – 1 p.m.