CARY, N.C. - The Bowdoin College men's tennis team saw its season come to an end at the hands of NESCAC rival Williams, 5-3, in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division III Men's Tennis Tournament on Monday morning.
The Polar Bears, who had split two previous meetings with the Ephs this spring, finish their year with a record of 15-8. Williams advances to play in the national semifinals against Emory on Tuesday.
Bowdoin and Williams split the opening doubles matches, with the Ephs taking a point at #2, 8-4, and the Polar Bears, courtesy of Casey Grindon and Chris Lord, winning the match at #3, 8-5. The remaining match at #1 doubles between Bowdoin's Oscar Pena/Sam King and Williams' Bryan Chow/Trey Meyer proved to be an epic struggle.
The Polar Bears sprinted to a 3-0 lead and held a 6-3 advantage midway through the duel. The Ephs battled back to knot the score at 6-6 and the teams traded points, forcing a tiebreaker at 8-8. Pena and King prevailed by winning five of the last six points in the tiebreak to take a 9-8 (7-3) win and lift Bowdoin to a 2-1 lead heading into singles.
Singles play proved to be the difference for the Ephs, as Williams claimed four of the five completed matches. Bowdoin lost the first set in five of the six matches overall and couldn't dig out of the deficit. Casey Grindon earned the lone point for the Polar Bears at #3, taking a straight-set 6-3, 6-3 win. Williams rallied with straight-set victories at #5, #2 and #6 to take a 4-3 advantage overall. Oscar Pena and Chris Lord were able to force third sets for Bowdoin, but could not complete the comeback as Lord went down 4-6, 6-3, 1-6 to Matt Micheli, sealing the win for the Ephs.
King and Pena have qualified for the individual Division III doubles championship that begins on Thursday, May 24. Draws for the championship with be released on Tuesday evening.
Williams 5, Bowdoin 3
NCAA Division III Quarterfinals
1. Trey Meyer (WIL) vs. Oscar Pena (BOW) 6-2, 6-7, 3-1, unfinished
2. Felix Sun (WIL) def. Sam King (BOW) 6-3, 7-5
3. Matt Micheli (WIL) def. Chris Lord (BOW) 6-4, 3-6, 6-1
4. Casey Grindon (BOW) def. Zach Weiss (WIL) 6-3, 6-3
5. Bryan Chow (WIL) def. Noah Bragg (BOW) 6-4, 6-1
6. Will Petrie (WIL) def. Kyle Wolstencroft (BOW) 7-6 (7-3), 6-3
1. Oscar Pena/Sam King (BOW) def. Bryan Chow/Trey Meyer (WIL) 9-8 (7-3)
2. Felix Sun/Matt Micheli (WIL) def. Doug Caplan/Kyle Wolstencroft (BOW) 8-4
3. Casey Grindon/Chris Lord (BOW) def. Will Petrie/Kevin Shallcross (WIL) 8-5