Amherst Sweeps NESCAC End-of-Season Awards

lernerSenior Zack Lerner was named the NESCAC's
2009 Co-Player of the Year.

From a NESCAC release

AMHERST, MA – The Amherst College men’s tennis team placed a trio of student-athletes on the New England Small College Athletic Conference’s 2009 All-Conference teams this afternoon, and swept the season-ending awards. The Lord Jeffs fell to Middlebury in the NESCAC Championship on Sunday, but were selected as a host site for the first three rounds of the upcoming NCAA Tournament.

Senior captain Zack Lerner (Scarsdale, NY) was named the NESCAC’s Co-Player of the Year, and landed on the First Team alongside doubles partner Moritz Koenig (Hamburg, Germany). First-year Austin Chafetz (Rancho Palos Verdes, CA) was named the Rookie of the Year, and earned a spot on the Second Team, while head coach Chris Garner was voted the Coach of the Year by his peers.

Lerner was one of just two players who earned First Team recognition for both singles and doubles, and was named the Co-Player of the Year with Middlebury’s Conrad Olson. A two-time reigning All-American, Lerner was named to the NESCAC’s First Team for the third straight season.

Koenig earned a spot on the NESCAC’s First Team for his doubles play with Lerner, as the pair went 7-2 against in-conference competition this spring. The second-year Amherst player has been an integral part of Amherst’s season, as he has not only played alongside Lerner in doubles, but also as a mainstay in the singles lineup.

Rounding out Amherst’s selections to the All-NESCAC teams is Chafetz, who landed on the Second Team and earned Rookie of the Year honors for his debut season with the Lord Jeffs. Chafetz went 15-1 in singles play this season, losing only a single match during a busy spring break.

Garner arrived at Amherst last year and immediately lit a fire in the Lord Jeff program, as Amherst upset 4th-ranked archrival Williams in the 2008 NESCAC Championships. This season, Garner’s first recruiting class has made a lasting impact in the lineup, with three first-years playing both singles and doubles.

Garner was voted the Coach of the Year this season for leading Amherst to a 24-6 overall record in dual matches, and a 6-1 record against NESCAC competition. This weekend, Garner’s Lord Jeffs have a bye in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament, before hosting the next two rounds of play. The Jeffs will face the winner of Friday’s match between Wilkes and Roger Williams on Saturday.