Jeffs Upset by Williams in NESCAC Semifinals, 5-3

Amherst will likely receive an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament.

AMHERST, MA – Williams College snapped its four-match losing streak against Amherst College Saturday afternoon in the 2010 NESCAC Men’s Tennis Championship semifinal round, as the third-seeded Ephs upset the second-seeded Lord Jeffs at Hampshire College’s indoor courts, 5-3.

Amherst (23-10, 7-1 NESCAC) had won four consecutive matches against Williams (11-5, 6-2 NESCAC), including a 5-0 result in last year’s conference tournament semifinals, but the Ephs pushed back in the rivalry by upsetting the fifth-ranked team in Division III.

The Ephs advance to the NESCAC title match for the first time since 2007 and will take on top-seeded and top-ranked Middlebury tomorrow at 1 p.m. in Amherst, while the Lord Jeffs will likely receive an at-large bid to the upcoming NCAA Tournament. Williams won 11 consecutive conference crowns from 1993-2003, while Middlebury has claimed five of the past six.

The Lord Jeffs won two of three doubles matches when these teams met during the regular season, but the Ephs turned the tables by heading into singles play with a 2-1 lead today. Bryan Chow and Dicken Chaplin defeated Amherst’s Austin Chafetz ’12 (Rancho Palos Verdes, CA) and Robby Sorrel ’12 (Scarsdale, NY) at No. 1, 8-4, with Nick Lebedoff and Will Petrie teaming up to earn a second point by edging Moritz Koenig ’11 (Hamburg, Germany) and Mark Kahan ’13 (Unionville, CT) at No. 2, 8-6.

Amherst got its lone doubles point in the No. 3 match, with Sean Doerfler ’11 (Douglaston, NY) and Wes Waterman ’12 (Palm Beach Gardens, FL) earning an 8-4 win over Richard Meyer and Felix Sun.

Amherst took the top two singles bouts, but the other four belonged to Williams. In the only three-set match of the afternoon, Chow dropped his first set to Waterman but stormed back to win each of the next two sets by a 6-2 margin for the clinching point.

Winning in two sets for the Ephs were Jeremy Weinberger at No. 3 and Zach Weiss at No. 5. Weinberger defeated Koenig, 6-2, 6-1, with Weiss knocking out Priit Gross ’11 (Tartu, Estonia) by the same score.

The Jeffs got their two singles points from their top two players, as Chafetz cruised past Sun at No. 1, 6-1, 6-1, and Kahan defeated Lebedoff in a tight match, 6-4, 7-6.

NESCAC Men’s Tennis Championship Semifinals (@ Hampshire College)
#3 Williams College def. #2 Amherst College, 5-3
1. Bryan Chow/Dicken Chaplin (WIL) def. Austin Chafetz/Robby Sorrel (AMH) 8-4
2. Nick Lebedoff/Will Petrie (WIL) def. Moritz Koenig/Mark Kahan (AMH) 8-6
3. Sean Doerfler/Wes Waterman (AMH) def. Richard Meyer/Felix Sun (WIL) 8-4

1. Austin Chafetz (AMH) def. Felix Sun (WIL) 6-1, 6-1
2. Mark Kahan (AMH) def. Nick Lebedoff (WIL) 6-4, 7-6
3. Jeremy Weinberger (WIL) def. Moritz Koenig (AMH) 6-2, 6-1
4. Bryan Chow (WIL) def. Wes Waterman (AMH) 4-6, 6-2, 6-2
5. Zach Weiss (WIL) def. Priit Gross (AMH) 6-2, 6-1
6. Sean Doerfler (AMH) vs. Richard Meyer (WIL) 4-6, 0-3, unfinished