No. 19 Men’s Tennis Suffers 7-2 Setback to No. 4 Middlebury College on Sunday in Vermont

MIDDLEBURY, Vt. – The No. 4 Middlebury College men's tennis team was clicking on all cylinders Sunday, as it defeated No. 19 Tufts University, 7-2, during NESCAC Conference action in Middlebury, Vermont. 

Zain Ali was victorious during the No. 1 doubles flight on Sunday.

The Panthers (13-1, 3-0 in NESCAC) went 5-1 in singles action and 2-1 on the doubles side. The hosts were led by two-win performances by junior Kyle Schlanger, and seniors Hamid Derbani and Allen Jackson.

Schlanger clinched the match for the Panthers with a straight-set triumph, 6-3, 6-2, over freshman Zach Shaff during No. 4 singles.

Freshman Nathan Niemiec continues to rise to the occasion for the Jumbos (5-4, 2-2 in NESCAC), as he improved to 5-2 in singles-oriented matches during the 2017 season, outlasting junior Timo van der Geest in straight sets, 6-2, 6-2, during No. 5 singles. 

Juniors Rohan Gupte and Zain Ali proved to be a strong pair at No. 1 doubles for head coach Karl Gregor, as the two Jumbos downed sophomore Lubomir Cuba and junior William de Quant, 8-4. 

Ali battled during No. 2 singles for the Jumbos, but was ultimately defeated, 7-6 (10-8), 6-2, by de Quant. Cuba cruised to a 6-1, 6-1 victory at the top slot in singles action against Gupte. 

Derbani opened up with a 6-4 first-set victory over junior Danny Coran during No. 3 singles, but Coran responded with a 7-6 (10-8) win during the must-win second set. Derbani emerged victorious with a 10-5 victory during the superbreaker. 

Jackson competed in the No. 6 slot during singles action, outperforming senior captain Kevin Kelly, 6-0, 6-3. Derbani and Schlanger flexed their muscles during the No. 2 doubles flight with a narrow 9-8 (9-7) win over Shaff and senior captain Ben Battle

Jackson and van der Geest left little question about who was going to win No. 3 doubles, as the pair posted a commanding 8-3 win over junior Griffin Brockman and sophomore Ross Kamin

The Jumbos will be back in action on Saturday against visiting Wesleyan (Conn.) at 9 a.m. in Medford, Massachusetts. 

Written by Trevor Wenners, Athletic Communications Intern