Oct. 1, 2012
FREDERICKSBURG, VA – The final day of the ITA Southeast Regional Championship was a good one for the Johns Hopkins men’s tennis team. Senior Andy Hersh won his second straight ITA Southeast Singles title while sophomores Tanner Brown and Erik Lim claimed the ITA Southeast Doubles title. It is the second time Hopkins has produced the singles and doubles champions, and the first time it has happened in the same year.
With their wins, Hersh, Brown and Lim will advance to the USTA/ITA National Small College Championship scheduled for October 11-14 at the Copeland-Cox Tennis Center in Mobile, AL. All three also earn ITA All-America honors with their titles. The USTA/ITA National Small College Championship is comprised of the eight regional champions (and/or at-large selections) from NCAA Divisions II and III, NAIA and Junior/Community Colleges.
In addition to the two championship draw wins, Hopkins also claimed wins in the B1 and B2 Singles Draws as well as the B1 Doubles Draw. Freshman Nathan Law won the B1 Singles while senior Morgan Dauer claimed the B2 draw. Sophomore Ben Hwang and Law combined to win the B1 Doubles draw.
Hersh, the number one seed in the championship bracket, lost just one set in six matches en route to his second title. In addition, his final four wins came against seeded opponents. He opened with a 6-0, 6-2 win over Michael Holt (WL) before beating Demetri Verahnos (SU) 6-0, 6-1. In the round of 16, Hersh beat ninth-seeded Yuvraj Kumar (CMU) 6-2, 6-2. He then won 6-2, 6-0 over ninth-seeded Abhishek Alla (CMU) to advance to the semifinals for the third straight year. In the semifinals he beat sixth-seeded Kevin Caulfield (HAV) 3-6, 6-3, 6-1 and then took down third-seeded Hayden White (WL) 6-3, 7-5 in the final.
Also in the semifinals was sophomore and number two seed Brown. He opened the tournament with a 6-2, 6-2 win over Vishnu Rajes (WC) before topping Sam Wichlin (UMW) 6-4, 6-2. In the round of 16, Brown was a 7-5, 6-4 winner over ninth-seeded Luis Acaba (HAV) to move into the quarterfinals. There he beat Ross Silverberg (FM), the seventh seed, in three sets 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 (3). The win pushed Brown into the semifinals for the second straight year, where he lost to White 6-2, 6-4.
Sophomore Jeremy Schwartz won a pair of matches before falling in the round of 16 to Alla, by a 6-1, 6-4 score. He beat Chiraag Shetty (CNU) 6-3, 6-4 in the first round and then beat eighth-seeded Alex Blakhin (UMW) in a close 7-5, 6-7 (2), 7-6 (3) match. Lim, seeded ninth, advanced to the quarterfinals for the second year in a row. He opened with a 6-1, 6-2 win over Evan Stack (BC) and then beat Donato Rizzolo (UMW) 6-3, 6-4. Lim followed that with a come-from-behind 2-6, 6-4, 6-3 win over fourth-seeded Duke Miller (CMU) – last year’s runner-up. He then lost in the quarters to sixth-seeded Kevin Caulfield (HAV) 6-2, 3-6, 6-0.
Sophomore Sam Weissler won his first two matches before falling to Caulfield in the round of 16. He defeated ninth-seeded Taylor Shamshiri (WL) 6-3, 6-3. He then beat Joey Frank (DC) 6-0, 7-5 before falling 5-7, 6-1, 6-1 to Caulfield. Hwang, the fifth seed, won his first three matches before falling to White in the quarterfinals. He began with a 7-5, 2-6, 6-1 win over Thomas Johnson (WL) and followed that with a 7-5, 6-2 defeat of David Lunding-Johansson (UMW). In the round of 16, Hwang beat ninth-seeded Christian Heaney-Secord (CMU) in straight sets, 6-1, 6-3. He then lost in three sets 3-6, 6-3, 6-2 to White. Sophomore Noah Joachim won his first match, 6-1, 6-2 over Daniel Albers (SU) but then lost to Silverberg 7-6 (1), 5-7, 6-1.
The doubles draw ended up with an all-Hopkins final as Hersh and classmate Jeff Kamei squared off against Brown and Lim for the title. Brown and Lim were the fifth seed in the draw and defeated the second and fourth ranked teams en route to their title. The duo opened with an 8-2 win over Dylan Marsh (UC) and Evan Stutchin (URS) and then beat Matt Cebul and Matt Romei (HAV) 8-4. In the quarterfinals, the duo bested Ala and Bryce Beisswanger (CMU) 9-7 to move on. The pair then upset second-seeded Rizzolo and Evan Charles (UMW) 8-5 to set up a meeting with their teammates in the final, which Brown and Lim won 6-1, 6-4.
Hersh and Kamei were seeded fourth and beat a pair of ranked opponents on the way to the final. The duo opened with an 8-6 win over Thomas Cooper and Jooho Yu (CMU) and followed with another 8-6 win over White and Chris Hu. In the quarterfinals, Hersh and Kamei beat fifth-seeded Caufield and Danny Himelstein (HAV) to move on. The pair then topped the number one seed and last year’s runner-up, Miller and Will Duncan (CMU), 8-5 to advance to the finals.
Also in the championship bracket were Joachim, Weissler and freshmen Nick Garcia and Chris Jou. Joachim and Garcia dropped their first match, 8-5, to fifth-seeded Michael Holt and Taylor Shamshiri. The pair then lost to Keegan Barkley and Graham Wilson (VWC), 8-3, in the consolation bracket. Weissler and Jou beat Matt Kessler and Joey Ross (ROAN) 8-2 in the first round. The duo then lost to fifth-seeded Heaney-Secord and Kosuke Hasegawa (CMU), 8-3.
Law opened the B1 draw with an 8-5 win over Christian Lynn (BC) and then beat Alec Tunner (FM), 8-2, in the quarterfinals. He then beat Harsha Rao (CMU) 6-3, 1-6, 7-6 (1) to advance to the finals, where he won over Julian Pearlman (CMU) 6-4, 6-3. In the B2 draw, it was an all-Hopkins final as Dauer squared off against Kamei and prevailed over the senior, 6-4, 6-3. Dauer dropped just three games in his first two matches, beating Elliot Perow (JUN), 8-0, and Zack King (HSC), 8-3, to advance to the semifinals. There he beat Joel Lankford (CMU) 6-1, 6-2 to move on to the finals. Kamei made his way to the finals with wins over Will Sloan (CNU), 8-5; Jason Teitelbaum (MUH), 8-4; and Jason Mifsud (LC), 6-3, 6-4.
Hwang and Law dropped a total of just 10 games in four matches to win the B1 doubles draw. The pair opened with an 8-0 win over Andrew Gear and Mark Hardesty (SMC). They followed that with an 8-2 defeat of Sloan and Robbie Wagner (CNU). In the semifinals, Hwang and Law beat Kumar and Paul Okuda (CMU), 8-3, and then bested Lankford and Rao, 8-5, to win the draw. Also in the draw were Dauer and Schwartz, who advanced to the semifinals. The pair opened with an 8-2 win over Adam Goldberger and Nick Mancuso (SU). They then beat Andrew Deckert and Peter Riley (GCC), 8-3, before falling to Lankford and Rao, 8-5.