After capturing the NCAA championship this past spring, the men’s tennis team launched into its fall season with an array of impressive performances at the Trinity Invitational Tournament this past weekend.
Justin Reindel ’14 stormed past the competition to win the ‘A Flight’ singles title, while Eli Mlaver ’14 captured the ‘B Flight’ singles championship. In doubles action, the tandem of Daniel Keolasy ’13 and Surainder Asokaraj ’12 secured the ‘B Flight’ doubles title.
From a broader perspective, the Jeffs put in a very solid team effort, as nine of the 10 Amherst players won their first-round singles match.
As the Jeffs’ top player at the tournament, Reindel perplexed his opponents with his consistency, heavy topspin forehand and a dazzling variety of drop shots, lobs and angle winners. The Scarsdale southpaw cruised past his first two opponents, winning 6-0, 6-0 and 6-1, 6-0, before encountering stiffer resistance in the semifinals.
On the second day, Reindel grinded out a 6-4, 1-6, 10-8 tiebreak victory over Trinity’s top player before dismantling Vassar’s Andrew Guzzick 6-3, 6-1 in the championship match. Guzzick entered the tournament as the No. 8-ranked player in the country, but was no match for the in-form Reindel.
“In general, we’re coming out strong off our national title,” Reindel said. “The NCAA title has made everyone on the team more confident before stepping on the court,” especially important given the challenging mental aspect of the sport, Reindel said.
The tournament also enabled a handful of freshmen to gain early exposure to collegiate- level tennis, and the new faces delivered impressive performances. Sean Rodriguez ’15 teamed with Eli Mlaver ’14 to reach the ‘A Flight’ doubles final. Andrew Scheiner ’15 advanced to the semifinals of the ‘A flight’ doubles tournament with Reindel, and pushed Guzzick to a third-set tiebreak in quarterfinal singles action. Sam Ubersax ’15 progressed to the semifinals of the ‘B flight’ singles bracket before losing a three-set nail-biter.
Looking ahead to the upcoming schedule, the Jeffs will send a squad to Providence, RI this weekend to compete in the Brown Invitational Tournament.
Amherst’s starting lineup, on the other hand, is preparing for the ITA Regional Championships on Sept. 23-25, the premier individual tournament for Northeast Div. III schools.