BRUNSWICK, Maine. – The Nichols College men's tennis team defeated UMass Boston 5-1 in the First Round of the NCAA Tournament Thursday afternoon at the Pickard Courts on the campus of Bowdoin College.
The Bison have now won their First Round match in five of their six trips to the NCAA Tournament, having scored wins over Marywood (5-0) in 2012, Colby-Sawyer (5-0) in 2013, Ramapo (5-3) in 2015, and Colby-Sawyer (5-4) again last season.
Nichols opened things up by taking two of the three doubles matches. Senior captain James Smith (Monte Sereno, Calif.) and freshman Guilherme Barbosa (Bradenton, Fla.) earned an 8-1 win at No. 2 doubles over sophomore Tin Tran (Quincy, Mass.) and freshman Onkgopotse Mokoka (Pretoria, South Africa).
Sophomore Igor Markowski (Paris, France) and freshman Peter Coletti (Beverly, Mass.) put the Bison up 2-0 with a win at No. 3 doubles next. They defeated sophomore Ray Platteel (Holbrook, Mass.) and junior Guang Huang (Quincy, Mass.) 8-3.
The Beacons earned their lone point at No. 1 doubles as freshman Alexander Comerchero (Brookline, Mass.) and junior Austin DeLasse (Mexico City, Mexico) knocked off sophomore Blake Norton (Stratford, Conn.) and freshman Brandon Howard (Hamden, Conn.), 8-4.
The Bison wasted no time clinching the win in singles as freshman Jack Donaldson (Easton, Md.) defeated junior Sanshrut Sharma (Mumbai, India) 6-0, 6-1 at No. 5 singles before senior Jake Zapatka (Wethersfield, Conn.) won his No. 6 singles match 6-0, 6-0 over Platteel.
For the third consecutive match it was Barbosa earning the match clinching point as he defeated Tran at No. 4 singles 6-1, 6-2.
Smith was leading Comerchero 7-5, 2-1 in the second set at No. 3 singles while Howard was down 5-7, 0-2 to sophomore Josh Bhasin (Tulsa, Okla.) at No. 2 singles. Norton was leading in the second set after dropping the first set to DeLasse, 5-7, 2-1.
This is only the second time that the Bison and the Beacons have played each other with Nichols also winning that match. The Bison lead the all-time series at, 2-0.
UMass Boston (10-8) – season completed
Nichols (19-3) – Friday, May 12 at Bowdoin in NCAA Second Round, 8:00 a.m.