The Bates College Men’s Varsity tennis team got off to an exciting but tough start last weekend as they faced off with surrounding NESCACs at the Middlebury invitational in Middlebury, Vermont. Overall, the team racked up a 6-13 record against the competition, with key player Duane Davis losing in the semifinals to Skidmore’s Ted Berkowitz with a 6-4, 6-2 result. Additionally, sophomore Ben Rosen won a match in class A singles with a first-round victory against Skidmore’s Kai Yuen Leung. The team this year is young but full of potential.

While it is comprised of mostly underclassmen, there is no question as to the Bates tennis team’s talent, with the team being the 23rd ranked recruiting class in the nation for D3. Even though spots haven’t yet been set in stone, the team is already working very well together. According to first year Ben Eckardt from Montgomery, New Jersey: “There isn’t a single captain, yet there is a team full of leaders. We’re looking to improve off of last year’s good season by working even harder this year.” Though it’s too soon to tell how this season will play out, last year the Bates tennis team proved to be a real contender in the conference, securing wins over very difficult teams such as Bowdoin, Middlebury, and Pomona Pitzer.

This weekend, the team traveled to Williams College to face off in another tournament. On Friday, the Bates team impressively won six matches versus three losses. Sophomores Ben Rosen and Fergus Scott were able to secure two wins each in the first two rounds. According to first year tennis star Duane Davis: “The tennis is looking really strong. We’ve been training very hard on and off the court. We’ve seen that our hard work has helped us get the results we want. This weekend, Fergus Schoot, Ben Rosen and Patrick Ordway had some great results. They were able to pull through and get the W. In doubles, we fell a little short but were happy with the way we played. We love fighting and playing hard on the court and we have a lot to look forward to. We have one more fall tournament next weekend held by Bates. We look forward to competing in this tournament and working hard in the off-season. Our team is so deep and talented and teams will fear us in the spring season when they have to play Bates.”

This year, the team is looking to take their game to the next level as a cohesive and motivated unit. While the team knows that they have a tough season ahead, they are working to improve their fitness and court game. Their next tournament, the Wallach Invitational, will be held at Bates on October 10-11.