Men’s Tennis Dominates Tough Spring Break Competition in California
Issue   |   Tue, 03/22/2016 - 23:23

The Amherst men’s tennis team got its season off to a great start this past week, going 8-2 over the course of their spring break trip to California. The team started off their week of matches on Sunday, March 13, when they faced off against both Vassar College and Washington College. Amherst set the tone for the week by managing to cleanly sweep both teams, each with a final score line of 9-0.

Against Washington, Anton Zykov ’17 notched an impressive 6-1, 6-0 victory on the first court. On the second court, senior Andrew Yaraghi posted a 6-2, 6-2 win, while on the third court, first-year Justin Sun dominated his opponent and achieved a final score line of 6-0, 6-0.

Fellow first-year Jesse Levitin won by a large 6-1, 6-1 margin on the fourth court, while sophomore Ben Birkenfeld earned a 6-2, 6-1 victory against his opponent.

In the final singles court, junior Sam Silver saw off his opponent in a comfortable 6-1, 6-0 win. In the doubles courts, Yaraghi and Zykov, Sun and Berkenfeld and first-year Jon Heidenberg and Silver won 8-2, 8-4 and 8-2, respectively.

The purple and white’s performance against Vassar was similar in that they swept each match, including both singles and doubles matches. In addition, Amherst won every singles match in straight sets, firmly establishing their dominance.

The next day, Amherst faced off against Hope International College and Chapman University, and swept their way to a 4-0 start to their season. In the match against Hope International, Sun shined once again in a 6-3, 6-1 victory on the first court.
On the second court, Levitin came back from a set down to win against his opponent with a final score line of 3-6, 6-4, 17-15. Against Chapman, Zykov won on court one 6-0, 6-3, while Yaraghi posted a dominant 6-1, 6-3 win on the second court.
With these four wins under their belt, Amherst looked to carry their momentum into their next match against Pomona-Pitzer. While this match did not come nearly as easily as the first four, the purple and white were up to the challenge and earned a tough 6-3 win. Amherst’s victories came from the first, third, fourth and fifth singles courts, as well as from the first and third doubles courts.

On Thursday, March 17, Amherst had two more matches against Azusa Pacific and Cerritos College. Amherst eased to a 7-2 win over Cerritos, with their victories coming from five singles courts and two doubles courts. Amherst was not able to overcome a dominant Azusa Pacific team and fell by a score line of 8-1.
Fresh off their defeat to Azusa Pacific, the purple and white looked to bounce back the next day against Glendale Community College and Redlands University.

Fortunately, they were able to do just that, and posted 9-0 and 7-2 victories against Glendale and Redlands, respectively. Against Redlands, Amherst won five of six singles matches as well as two doubles matches in order to seal the win.
To round out their spring break trip, Amherst then faced off against a tough Claremont-Mudd-Scripps College team. Despite winning on three singles courts in the matchup, Amherst unfortunately fell by a score line of 4-5.

On the first doubles court, Zykov and Yaraghi suffered a narrow defeat, with a final score line of 9-8 (7-5). This loss would prove to make the difference for the purple and white, who fell to 8-2 overall on the season.

Now back in Massachusetts, Amherst looks to start strong among NESCAC competition this Sunday, March 27 when they will face Colby at home (time TBD).

They will also play at Harvard the same day at 5 p.m.

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