HADLEY, Mass. – Amherst College is the top seed for the 2019 NESCAC Men’s Tennis Championship and receives a bye into Saturday’s semifinals round at this weekend’s event, which will be held at Middlebury’s Proctor Tennis Courts in Vermont.
Amherst is looking to win its fourth NESCAC title and first since 2014, and is the #1 seed for the fifth time, the first time since 2015.
First-round action begins on Friday, May 3, with semifinals are set for Saturday, May 4, and the championship match scheduled for Sunday, May 5. The Panthers are hosting the NESCAC Tennis Championships for the first time since 2015 and fourth time overall.
Amherst (15-3) will take on the winner of the match between No. 4 Bowdoin and No. 5 Williams, both teams that the Mammoths defeated during the 2019 regular season.
The Mammoths enter the championship having won 10 of its last 11 matches and boasting a 7-1 versus NESCAC opponents this season, including 5-4 wins over the Ephs and the Polar Bears. They are 3-1 against Bowdoin in the NESCAC Championship but dropped a 5-1 decision to the Polar Bears in the 2016 semifinals. Amherst owns a 5-4 edge over Williams in NESCAC postseason play, but fell, 5-3, in the most recent meeting in the 2017 quarterfinals.
Middlebury will be providing live stats for all matches this week, and video for select matches depending on the court they are played on.
Live stats for the entire weekend will be available at the following link: http://scores.tennisticker.de/
A little camera icon will appear in the bottom of the individual match if live video is available on that court.
Scouting the Field
No. 4 Bowdoin (15-3) and No. 5 Williams (8-7) will kick off the 2019 NESCAC Championship with a 9 a.m. match on Friday, May 3. The Polar Bears have won the last two NESCAC titles, and have played in the last three championship matches. Bowdoin went 7-2 versus NESCAC teams this season and enters the tournament having won 11 of its last 13 matches. The Polar Bears, who are making their 18th appearance in the field, are looking to move into the semifinals for the sixth consecutive year.
Williams has been in every NESCAC Tournament field and is the No. 5 seed for the first time since 2015. The Ephs have reached the semifinal round nine of the last 10 years and won their fourth NESCAC title in 2013.
Williams went 5-3 against NESCAC competition this season, including a 6-3 loss to Bowdoin last Saturday in the regular season finale. Bowdoin and Williams are 1-1 against each other in the NESCAC Championship series. The Polar Bears evened the series record with a 5-3 victory in the 2012 semifinals.
Third-seeded Middlebury (13-6) hosts No. 6 Tufts (8-8) in the other quarterfinal match that is scheduled to begin no earlier than 11:30 a.m. on Friday. The Panthers started the spring season with a 7-0 mark and have won four of their last five matches entering the tournament. Middlebury has been in every NESCAC Championship field and is the No. 3 seed for the second year in a row. The Panthers have reached the semifinals 13 consecutive years and have played in five straight finals. Middlebury, which posted a 6-2 record versus NESCAC teams this season, owns eight NESCAC titles and won its last championship in 2016.
Tufts is the No. 6 seed for the first time since 2014 and returns to the tournament field after a two-year hiatus. The Jumbos are making their sixth appearance overall and looking for their first victory in the NESCAC Championship. Tufts finished the regular season winning three of its last four matches. Middlebury won a 2013 quarterfinal match, 5-1, in the only meeting between the two teams in the NESCAC Championship. The Panthers earned a 6-3 victory over the Jumbos on April 13 this season.
Wesleyan (14-3) is the No. 2 seed for the first time in program history and will face the winner of the Tufts/Middlebury match. The Cardinals qualified for the tournament for the fourth straight year and will be playing in the semifinal round for the fourth consecutive season. Wesleyan enters the NESCAC Championship having won four straight matches and went 7-2 versus NESCAC teams this season. The Cardinals are aiming for their first appearance in the championship match. Wesleyan has faced Middlebury once in the NESCAC Championship, falling to the Panthers, 5-2, in the 2016 semifinals. The Cardinals are 1-0 against Tufts after winning, 5-3, in the 2016 quarterfinals.
The six-team championship field is chosen by a tournament selection committee, which seeds the participating teams. The top two seeds receive a first-round bye. Results of each match and updated schedules will be available at the conclusion of each day at NESCAC.com.
2019 NESCAC Men’s Tennis Championship
First Round - Friday, May 3
Hosted by Middlebury
No. 5 Williams vs. No. 4 Bowdoin - 9 a.m.
No. 6 Tufts vs. No. 3 Middlebury - Not before 11:30 a.m.
Semifinals - Saturday, May 4
Hosted by Middlebury
Winner of No. 4/5 Match vs. No. 1 Amherst - 9 a.m.
Winner of No. 3/6 Match vs. No. 2 Wesleyan - Not before 11:30 a.m.
Championship - Sunday, May 5
Hosted by Middlebury
Semifinal Winners - 9 a.m.