Men continue strong early performance at MIT
The men’s tennis team returned to action this weekend at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Invitational. This marks an unusual feature of the tennis season relative to the other collegiate sports, which normally run continuously through a series of months in one particular season. Tennis, however, is year-round, stretching from September to April, and also contains a four-month interlude from October to February between official matches. This unique schedule presents opportunities and challenges for the team. On the one hand, it allows the team to get a sense of how they stack up against other top ranked teams, which allows them to make adjustments to specific problems. At the same time, however, such a long layoff has the potential to zap any semblance of momentum generated from a strong start.
However, the Judges continued their high-level play to start the season at the MIT Invitational. Michael Arguello ’17 led the way in the singles bracket, reaching the semifinals before falling in three sets (4-6, 6-1,1-6) to Bowdoin College’s sophomore Grant Urken on Sunday morning. Beyond winning three matches, Arguello impressed by not dropping a set until the third. Fellow senior Brian Granoff ’17 also had a successful weekend, emerging victorious in his first two matches and advancing to the round of 16. Granoff, however, came up short in a tightly contested match against freshman Alex Taylor ’20 of Williams College (6-4, 7-6 (7-5)). Tyler Ng ’19 also reached the round of 16, notably coming back to defeat freshman Zach Bessette of Amherst College after dropping the first set in the round of 32. Ryan Bunis ’17, Jackson Kogan ’19, and Mitchell Ostrovsky ’20 all recorded victories for the Judges as well. In the doubles bracket, the teams of Arguello/Bunis and Kogan/Zach Cihlar ’19 both won their first matches and moved forward to the round of 16 before being knocked out of the main draw.
With four tournaments already under their belt, this has been the program’s most experience this early in the schedule since the 2008-2009 season. At the first tournament of the year, the Middlebury College Invitational, freshman David Aizenberg ’20 won the D flight singles, while the doubles team of Aizenberg/Ng reached the championship. In the second tourney, the Intercollegiate Tennis Association New England Regional at Williams College, senior Arguello made it to the final, and, in doing so, achieved the best finish at this tournament in Brandeis men’s tennis history. A week later at the Bates College’s Wallach Invitational, Harshil Dwivedi ’19 won the D flight singles championship, while Aizenberg/Ng once again reached the doubles championship.