Zack Lerner Leads Amherst at ITA Championships

Zack Lerner
Senior captain Zack Lerner led Amherst by advancing to the quarterfinals of both the singles and doubles bracket.
WILLIAMSTOWN, MA – The Amherst College men’s tennis team sent five singles players and two doubles pairs to Williams College for the 2008 Intercollegiate Tennis Association New England Championships. Senior captain Zack Lerner (Scarsdale, NY) led the Lord Jeffs by advancing to the quarterfinal round in both the singles and doubles brackets.

Lerner received a first-round bye as the singles tournament’s No. 3 seed and kicked off his weekend with a 6-1, 6-4 victory over senior Alex Caughron of Bowdoin College in the second round on Friday. Saturday brought two more matches for Lerner, including a 6-3, 6-1 win over senior Rick Devlin of Williams that advanced him to the quarterfinals. The Amherst captain’s run came to an end in the ensuing round, as fifth-seeded Conrad Olson of Middlebury earned a 6-3, 6-1 victory en route to his tournament title.

First-year Andrew Jung (Battle Creek, MI) was the only other Amherst player to escape the first round, as he opened his first collegiate tournament with a 6-2, 6-4 win over MIT’s Brian Wee. Jung followed up by giving Williams’ Will Petrie an exciting match, but it was Petrie who advanced with a 7-6(6), 5-7, 10-7 victory.

Falling in the first round were junior Dan Kim (Springfield, MO), sophomore Moritz Koenig (Hamburg, Germany) and first-year Surain Asokaraj (Acton, MA). Koenig fell to Williams’ Jeremy Weinberger (6-4, 7-5), Asokaraj lost to Middlebury first-year Eric Vehovec (6-3, 6-4), and Kim was eliminated by Shadowen of Bates (6-4, 6-1).

In doubles action, Lerner paired up with Koenig and cruised into the quarterfinals with a pair of wins on Friday. The Amherst duo got things started with an 8-2 win over sophomores Alex Eiseth and Rob Random of Salem State, following up with an 8-3 victory against first-years Josh Cranin and Kent Winningham of Bowdoin. Lerner and Koenig’s road block came in the form of the tournament’s No. 1 seed, Ben Stein and Amrit Rupasinghe of Bates College, with the Lord Jeffs falling in the quarterfinals, 8-4, to the eventual runner-up.

Jung and Kim paired up on the other side of the doubles bracket and escaped the first round with an 8-6 win over Steve Niemen and Scott Schulman of Brandeis University on Friday. The Jeffs could not match the success of Lerner and Koenig, as they came up just short against the No. 2 seed, seniors Gautam Samarth and David Yahng of Trinity College, in the second round, 9-7.

The Lord Jeffs return to action Friday, Oct. 3 when they head to Dartmouth for the first dual match of the season.

Complete Tournament Results

First Round
#3 Zack Lerner (Amherst) – Bye
Jeremy Weinberger (Williams) def. Moritz Koenig (Amherst) – 6-4, 7-5
Eric Vehovec (Middlebury) def. Surain Asokaraj (Amherst) – 6-3, 6-4
Andrew Jung (Amherst) def. Briane Wee (MIT) – 6-2, 6-4
Shadowen (Bates) def. Dan Kim (Amherst) – 6-4, 6-1

Second Round
#3 Zack Lerner (Amherst) def. Alex Caughron (Bowdoin) – 6-1, 6-4
Will Petrie (Williams) def. Andrew Jung (Amherst) – 7-6(6), 5-7, (10-7)

Third Round
#3 Zack Lerner (Amherst) def. Rick Devlin (Williams) – 6-3, 6-1

Quarterfinal Round
#5 Conrad Olson (Middlebury) def. #3 Zack Lerner (Amherst) – 6-3, 6-1

First Round
Zack Lerner/Moritz Koenig (Amherst) def. Alex Eiseth/Rob Random (Salem State), 8-2
Andrew Jung/Dan Kim (Amherst) def. Steve Niemen/Scott Schulman (Brandeis), 8-6

Second Round
Zack Lerner/Moritz Koenig (Amherst) def. Josh Cranin/Kent Winningham (Bowdoin), 8-3
#2 Gautam Samarth/David Yahng (Trinity) def. Andrew Jung/Dan Kim (Amherst), 9-7

Quarterfinal Round
#1 Ben Stein/Amrit Rupasinghe (Bates) def. Zack Lerner/Moritz Koenig (Amherst), 8-4