Men’s tennis takes down Monmouth for NEC win

Sam Friedman

The Bobcats men’s tennis team, which had lost six matches in a row and eight of ten in 2008, made a statement over the Monmouth Hawks, who had won two of their previous three heading into Friday’s match. The Bobcats earned a 5-2 victory, just a week before the NEC tournament.

The teams started with singles play first, fearing inclement weather. Bobcat freshman Brian Mikkelson won decisively over the Hawks Tom Corrie, winning both sets in convincing fashion, 6-3 and 6-2. Not to be outdone, Shawn Pease, another Bobcat freshman, won 6-1 and 6-2 over Corey Forrest.

Also earning singles wins for the Bobcats were Tom Curran and Joe Nuara. Curran defeated Vik Gupta, who had not dropped a game over his last two matches, 6-3 and 6-2. Nuara also earned a 6-3 and 6-2 victory over Tim McLane.

Mikkelson was very active in his match. He made several back-handed shots against Corrie, who was doing everything in his power to hit the ball down the line. Instead of earning easy points however, Corrie found himself chasing balls around the court as Mikkelson had well-placed shots land behind Corrie, forcing him on multiple occasions in both sets to repeatedly hit the net during the rallies.

Meanwhile, John Hughes refused to allow Benjamin Evenden off the hook, giving the Monmouth senior all he could handle. Unfortunately for Hughes, he could not hold on for the win, and dropped his seventh straight singles match 3-7, 7-6,10-5.

Scott Salway fell to Pedro Bruno 6-0, 6-2.

In doubles play, the Bobcats took two of three to earn the double point. Scott Salway and Hughes defeated partners McLane and Forrest 8-2. Curran and Nuara teamed up to defeat Gupta and Bruno 8-3, winning the last four games.The Bobcats only loss was the freshmen tanden of Mikkelson and Pease, who fell to Hawk seniors Evenden and Corrie 8-6.

Mikkelson, Pease and Nuara won in singles play to pace the Bobcats to a 4-3 win over Sacred Heart.

With the win the Bobcats clinched the No. 2 seed for the NEC championships and will face St. Francis (PA) Friday afternoon.