Win for first-years Bryant and Carroll at ITA's
The Colby men's tennis team started off their fall season this past weekend at the Intercollegiate Tennis Association New England Small College Championships (ITA's) at Williams College in Williamstown, Mass. Colby sent four players to the tournament, which is widely considered one of the most prestigious and selective in all of college tennis.
The men were hoping to make an impact at ITA's just as the women's team did last weekend. Katie Muto '11 and Katie Brezinski '11 won a combined three matches last weekend at Babson College in Wellesley, Mass.
Facing a tough draw, however, the Mules were unable to get anything going. Junior Tommy Kimball, Colby's first singles player, faced off against Amherst College's Justin Reindel and fell 6-2, 6-2. Kimball played a consolation match on Saturday, but fell to Coast Guard Academy's Greg Mitchell, 6-2, 6-2.
Than Moore '12, who played third singles for Colby last spring, lost his first round match on Friday to DJ Patrick of Trinity College, 6-2, 6-3. On Saturday, Moore played Wheaton College senior Brian Krantz to a tight third set super-tiebreaker. Krantz was able to prevail, 6-2, 2-6, 10-7.
Coach Doanh Wang knows that his players need to find a way to start fast against this kind of competition. "Tommy and Than just need to find ways to stay in matches longer and get quicker starts. It is not an easy task to come back from behind against quality opponents. Good players know how to close the door on you if they can get ahead early."
Also playing on Friday was Colby's first-year doubles team of Jack Bryant and Matt Carroll. The righty-lefty combo faced off against a formidable Bowdoin team featuring Steven Sullivan, a national quarterfinalist. Seeing their first action in the Colby blue, Bryant and Carroll got off to a slow start and never recovered, falling 8-3.
Colby was able to pick up one win in the consolation round as Bryant and Carroll faced off against a solid Wesleyan team. Bryant credited the 8-2 victory to Carroll's "greasy volleys." As first-years, Bryant and Carroll don't have much experience under their belts. Carroll said later, "Jack and I played well together; we haven't been playing together for too long though, so we still have to figure each other out on the court."
The Mules will host an alumni match on Saturday, October 2 before playing UMass-Boston the next day. The weekend after, Colby will travel to Bates for the Wallach Invitational to wrap up the fall season, hopefully gaining a few wins from the confident first-years on the way. "We haven't reached the point where we are in each other's heads yet," Carroll said of himself and Bryant, adding, "It will come though, don't worry."