Skidmore rallies in singles action to beat UMass Boston 5-2 in NCAA tournament
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. -- Skidmore College rallied from a 2-1 deficit after doubles play to defeat UMass Boston 5-2 in a first-round match of the NCAA Division III Men’s Tennis tournament Thursday on the campus of Williams College.
With the win Skidmore (12-8) improved to 3-5 all time in NCAA tournament play and advanced to a second-round match versus MIT. UMass Boston, the Little East Conference champion making its first NCAA tournament appearance, saw its record fall to 14-4 on the year as Skidmore stopped the Beacons’ win streak at 12.
Play in the match started outside, but was moved inside when rain intruded while the teams were warming up for the singles matches.
Skidmore opened the match by claiming the first point, recording an 8-0 win at No. 3 doubles that was authored by Gabe Steerman and Miles Ransom.
The Beacons responded, however, by capturing wins at Nos. 1 and 2 doubles to fashion a 2-1 lead heading into singles play.
UMass Boston tied the match at 1 when Sean Cullen and David Hernandez registered an 8-6 win at No. 1 doubles.
The win that gave the Beacons the 2-1 lead after doubles play came via a tiebreaker at No. 2, where the UMass Boston duo of Charles Lai and Alex Loyer opened up a 5-2 lead and bumped that to a 7-3 advantage, before Skidmore’s Kit Green-Sanderson and Nick Tong stormed back to tie the match at 7. The Beacons broke the Thoroughbreds’ next serve, but the Skidmore duo returned the favor to force the tiebreak.
Serving first, Skidmore collected the first point, but the Beacons took the next two. Another point from Skidmore tied it at 2, before Lai and Loyer ripped off four consecutive points to take a 6-2 lead. An ace by Skidmore’s Green-Sanderson narrowed the score to 6-3, before Loyer ended the match with a drop shot from his right to the left side of the court.
Trailing 2-1 after doubles the Thoroughbreds got down to business in singles play, winning four matches in straight sets to move into the second round. Skidmore’s No. 2 singles player, Miles Ransom, won 6-1, 6-0 to tie the match at 2.
Jeremy Sherpa’s 6-0, 6-2 win at No. 1 singles gave the Thoroughbreds the lead for good. Next off the court with a win for Skidmore was No. 4 Gabe Steerman, who won 6-3, 6-0. Danny Knight then closed out the match with a 6-2, 7-6 (7-2) win at No. 3.