SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – For the second year in a row No. 1 seed Nichols and No. 2 seed Eastern Nazarene will meet in the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) Men's Tennis Championship match as both teams earned 5-0 sweeps in their respective semifinal matches on Wednesday afternoon. The championship match will be at Nichols on Saturday, May 5 at noon.
The Bison knocked off No. 4 seed Endicott and the Lions defeated No. 3 seed Roger Williams to earn their spots in the title match.
Nichols', winner of six consecutive CCC Tournament titles, will be making its seventh straight championship appearance. Eastern Nazarene returns to the championship after earning its first berth last season.
In the 2017 Championship, the Bison jumped out to a 2-1 lead after doubles followed by extremely competitive singles play. Every match, except for No. 6 which went unfinished, went to three sets. The Bison secured wins at No. 3, No. 4, and No. 5 to capture the conference crown.
During their regular-season meeting this year, Nichols was victorious, 6-3, as it gave ENC its only conference loss of the year.
Nichols and ENC will be competing for the title of CCC Tournament Champion. The winner of Saturday's match receive the conference's automatic qualifier into the 2018 NCAA Division III Men's Tennis Championship.
#1 Nichols 5, #4 Endicott 0
DUDLEY, Mass. – For the eighth-straight season, the Nichols College men's tennis team will play for the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) Championship as the top-seeded Bison defeated No. 4 seed Endicott College, 5-0, on Wednesday afternoon in the CCC Semifinals in Dudley, Mass.
The Bison (18-3) are in pursuit of their seventh-straight CCC crown, and will host No. 2-seed Eastern Nazarene College on Saturday afternoon at 12:00 p.m. The Lions cruised in their CCC Semifinal matchup with No. 3 seed Roger Williams on Wednesday, beating the Hawks 5-0 to advance. Endicott wraps up its season at 11-8 overall.
Sophomores Guilherme Barbosa (Bradenton, Fla.) and Peter Coletti (Beverly, Mass.) grabbed the first point of the day for the Bison, posting an 8-3 win at No. 2 doubles over junior Keaton McCleary (Charlotte, N.C.) and freshman Daniel Rinkert (Ben Lomond, Calif.). Sophomore Brandon Howard (Hamden, Conn.) and junior Igor Markowski (Paris, France) followed with an 8-6 win at No. 3 doubles over sophomore Thomas Brent (Gorham, Maine) and junior Christos Papadopoulos (Weymouth, Mass.), while junior Blake Norton (Stratford, Conn.) and freshman August Moeller (Hellerup, Denmark) made it a clean sweep of doubles play with an 8-4 win at the top doubles spot over senior Christopher Kirkpatrick (Newburyport, Mass.) and sophomore Charles Book (Devon, Pa.).
Barbosa got the Bison one point closer with a 6-1, 6-1 win over Brent at No. 2 singles, and Moeller clinched the match with a win over McCleary at No. 5 singles by the exact same score.
The Bison held leads in all of their other matchups before the match was clinched as Howard had rallied to force a third set against Kirkpatrick at No. 1 singles and led 3-6, 6-4, 2-1. Freshman Brandon Stewart (Gainesville, Fla.) led Book 6-2, 4-2 at No. 4 singles, while sophomore Jack Donaldson (Easton, Md.) led junior Anthony Rinaldi (Attleboro Falls, Mass.) 7-5, 1-0 at No. 6 singles. Norton and Rinkert were locked in a heated contest as Norton was able to battle back and win the tiebreak in the first set, 7-6 (7-1).
Nichols and Endicott have met 24 times in program history and the Bison lead the all-time series, 20-4. The Bison have won 14-straight in the series, including a perfect 6-0 mark against the Gulls in CCC Tournament play.
Match recap courtesy of the Nichols Sports Information Department.
#2 Eastern Nazarene 5, #3 Roger Williams 0
QUINCY, Mass.- The second-seeded Eastern Nazarene College men's tennis team topped No. 3 seed Roger Williams 5-0 in the CCC Tournament semifinals Wednesday afternoon at the ENC Tennis Courts to punch its ticket to the CCC Championship for the second year in a row.
The Lions improve to 17-3 on the season with the win while the Hawks fall to 10-6 overall.
The home team swept the three doubles matches to establish a 3-0 lead.
Alex Partyka (Moscow, Russia) and Laurent Ruttkowski (Castrop-Rauxel, Germany) notched an 8-5 victory at the No. 1 doubles spot over Grant Rosenberg (Melville, N.Y.) and Nick Spoor (Ballston Spa, N.Y.).
Santiago Camero (Valencia, Venezuela) and Henry Siercke (Hamburg, Germany) bested Brendan White (Old Lyme, Conn.) and Jared Deibe (Oakland, N.J.) 8-4 at the No. 2 position.
Julius Opaschowski (Hamburg, Germany) and Kaden Swarr (Brighton, Colo.) clipped Jake Cole (Sterling, Va.) and Thomas O'Leary (North Easton, Mass.) 8-2 at the third slot.
Siercke pushed the Lions advantage to 4-0 in the match with a straight-sets victory at the No. 2 singles position. The sophomore posted a 6-0, 6-2 win over Rosenberg to collect his team-leading 14th victory of the year.
Camero clinched the match with a 6-3, 6-0 decision at the No. 4 singles spot against Cole to tally his 12th singles win of the season.
When the match reached decision, Partyka held a one-set lead at the No. 1 singles slot and was tied 2-2 in the second frame.
Ruttkowski grabbed the first set 6-4 and sported a 4-1 lead in the second at the No. 3 position. Opaschowski was on the verge of capturing a straight-sets victory at the No. 5 spot having won the opening set 6-3 and owned a 5-0 lead in the second set.
Kyle Pierson (Redding, Calif.) and Roger Williams' O'Leary were knotted at 1-1 in the early stages of the No. 6 singles match.
Up next, Eastern Nazarene travels to take on six-time defending league champion Nichols May 5 in a rematch of last year's CCC Championship match.
Match recap courtesy of the Eastern Nazarene Sports Information Department.
2018 CCC Men's Tennis Tournament Schedule
(Games hosted by the higher seed)
Quarterfinals – Saturday, April 28
Semifinals – Wednesday, May 2
Finals – Saturday, May 5
#2 Eastern Nazarene at #1 Nichols, Noon
ABOUT THE COMMONWEALTH COAST CONFERENCE
The Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC), founded in 1984, is an NCAA Division III athletic conference comprised of ten full member and four associate member institutions throughout the New England region. Its membership aims to provide student-athletes with a positive experience in their pursuit of excellence through high academic standards, quality competition, and a meaningful student life. The conference administers championships in 18 intercollegiate sports.