KALAMAZOO, Mich. - On the weekend their class graduated from Bowdoin, men's tennis seniors Jerry Jiang and Grant Urken celebrated by winning the 2019 NCAA Division III doubles championship.
In their final day in a Bowdoin uniform, the duo completed their stellar careers with a pair of comeback wins to take the title. In the semifinals against Erik Kerrigan and Ninan Kumar of the University of Chicago, Urken and Jiang lost the first set and fought off a second set tiebreaker to take a 3-6, 7-6, 6-4 win to advance to the finals against Wesleyan's Noah Lilienthal and Adrian Roji.
Against the Cardinals, Urken and Jiang again dropped the first set but bounced back with a convincing second set victory. Tied at 3-3 in the third, Bowdoin broke serve and held their own to open a 5-3 advantage. With Urken serving for the title, Bowdoin did not lose a point to seal the 5-7, 6-1, 6-4 victory.
It is the second time a Bowdoin doubles team has won the NCAA doubles crown as Urken and Jiang join Oscar Pena and Stephen Sullivan, who won the championship in 2011. The win also completes the career "hat trick" for Urken, who won the team national championship with Jiang as first-years, then claimed the singles national title as a junior and then closed his career with a doubles national championship this spring.
The win also stamps Jiang as one of the finest doubles players in school history as he wins his first NCAA doubles title after winning the ITA New England Regional with Justin Wang last fall and finishing as runners-up at the ITA Oracle Cup in October.