BABSON PARK, Mass. – Fourteen student-athletes return this spring after earning New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) All-Conference honors in 2012, promising to make 2013 one of the most exciting and competitive men's tennis seasons in recent memory.
MIT earned its 14th straight NEWMAC title a year ago, defeating Clark University in the tournament final. Edwin Zhang (Falls Church, Va.) collected All-Conference nods at No. 1 singles and at No. 1 doubles, along with Matthew Skalak (Croton-on-Hudson, N.Y.). Larry Pang (Torrance, Calif.) and Curtis Wu (Yorba Linda, Calif.) combined to secure the second team All-Conference spot at No. 2 doubles as well.
Clark recorded one of its most successful campaigns in program history, winning 16 matches and advancing to the NEWMAC final for the first time, on the strength of NEWMAC Player of the Year, Diego Angel (Lima, Peru) and its five other All-Conference honorees. In addition to Angel, Dan Stein (Newton, Mass.), Josh Burger (Fairfield, Conn.) and Joel Simonson (Waterford, Conn.) were named to the second team All-Conference for singles play and Phillip Porter (Cortland Manor, N.Y.) and Dan Hall (Sutton, Mass.) were recognized in doubles. Mickey Cahoon was also honored as the NEWMAC Coach of the Year in 2012.
The Cougars knocked off second-seeded Coast Guard Academy in a hard-fought, 5-4, semifinal match to advance to the championship. Coast Guard went 4-1 in the regular season and saw four student-athletes named to the All-Conference team. Josh Fischer (Roanoke, Texas) and Blake Maurer (Fort Worth, Texas) return, after receiving first team recognition at No. 2 and No. 4 singles, respectively.
Springfield College appeared in the NEWMAC tournament semifinals for the first time since 2007, falling to the eventual champion, MIT. Joe Giannelli (Watertown, Conn.), the first team All-Conference selection at No. 6 singles and No. 3 doubles, looks to lead the Pride this spring.
Babson College was buoyed by the strong debut campaign from NEWMAC Rookie of the Year, Ramone Doyley (Kingston, Jamaica). Doyley compiled a 6-4 record at No. 1 singles for the Beavers and was 2-3 at the top spot in NEWMAC matches.
Junior Dan Sharon (Santa Monica, Calif.) of Wheaton College is the final All-Conference returnee. Sharon was tabbed to the second team at No. 3 singles and will look to provide some veteran leadership to coach Lynn Miller's squad, as the Lyons hope to return to the NEWMAC tournament after a one-year hiatus.
All six teams will be in action this weekend, as three league matches are scheduled for Saturday, March 30. Babson hosts Springfield, Clark welcomes Coast Guard and MIT travels to Wheaton. The top four teams will qualify for the NEWMAC tournament, which will take place on Saturday and Sunday, April 27-28 at the site of the highest overall seed.