BRUNSWICK, Maine - The Bowdoin College men's tennis team won the first three completed singles matches to earn a 5-1 victory over Trinity (TX) University in the regional finals of the NCAA Division III Tournament on Sunday.
With the victory, the Polar Bears (15-7) advance to the national quarterfinals for the first time since 2002 where they will face NESCAC rival Williams College on Monday, May 21 at Cary Tennis Park in Cary, North Carolina. More details on match times and live coverage will be announced next week.
Trinity ends it season with a record of 21-8.
The Tigers and Polar Bears split a pair of early doubles matches, with Jordan Mayer and Greg Haugen earning a 8-5 win at #2 doubles to give Trinity the early edge. Bowdoin answered at #3 just moments later when Casey Grindon and Chris Lord completed a 8-6 victory to even the contest. At #1 doubles, Bowdoin's Samuel King and Oscar Pena dueled Max Frey and Erick DelaFuente into a tiebreak before the Polar Bears eventually claimed a 9-8 win at a 2-1 advantage heading into singles play.
Bowdoin seized the momentum from there, as Lord dispatched Haugen 7-5, 6-1 at #3 singles and Pena finished off Frey 7-6, 6-0 at #1. Three matches were all poised to be the clincher for Bowdoin, but it was Grindon who earned the clinching point, watching a return from Charlie Curtis sail long at #4 singles to seal the match. King was about to serve match point for Bowdoin at #2 and Bragg was two points away at #5 when Grindon claimed his contest. Aaron Skinner of Trinity led Kyle Wolstencroft 6-2, 2-3 in the final remaining match at #6.
Bowdoin's second-ever NCAA Quarterfinal appearance will come against a familiar foe. The Ephs and Polar Bears have split two earlier meetings this season, with Williams taking the regular-season meeting, 5-4, on April 28, only to see the Polar Bears earn a 5-3 win in the NESCAC Semifinals on May 5.
Photos courtesy of Brian Beard and Creative Images Photography
Bowdoin 5, Trinity 1
1. Oscar Pena (BOW) def. Max Frey (TUM) 7-6, 6-0
2. Sam King (BOW) vs. Erick DelaFuente (TUM) 6-3, 5-4, unfinished
3. Chris Lord (BOW) def. Greg Haugen (TUM) 7-5, 6-1
4. Casey Grindon (BOW) def. Charlie Curtis (TUM) 6-2, 6-3
5. Noah Bragg (BOW) vs. Jordan Mayer (TUM) 6-2, 2-6, 5-1, unfinished
6. Kyle Wolstencroft (BOW) vs. Aaron Skinner (TUM) 2-6, 2-3, unfinished
1. Sam King/Oscar Pena (BOW) def. Max Frey/Erick DelaFuente (TUM) 9-8
2. Jordan Mayer/Greg Haugen (TUM) def. Kyle Wolstencroft/Doug Caplan (BOW) 8-5
3. Casey Grindon/Chris Lord (BOW) def. Charlie Curtis/Aaron Skinner (TUM) 8-6
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1,3); Singles (,3,1,4)