LEWISTON, Maine -- The No. 21 nationally ranked Bates men's tennis team nearly got a 2-1 lead after doubles play, but settled for a 2-1 deficit that turned into a 8-1 NESCAC loss to top-ranked Middlebury on Sunday at the Wallach Tennis Center.
The Panthers (14-1, 5-0 NESCAC) remain unbeaten against Division III competition, while Bates (6-6, 1-1 NESCAC) suffers its first conference loss and drops to the .500 mark overall.
Bates got its lone point at No. 1 doubles, where sophomores Matt Bettles (Taunton, England) and Rob Crampton (Wilton, Conn.) got past Middlebury's Andrew Peters and Brantner Jones by an 8-4 score. Middlebury coasted to an 8-1 win at third doubles, and at second doubles, the Panthers' Spencer Lunghino and David Farah pulled out a 9-7 decision over Bates senior Sam Woods (Cambridge, N.Y.) and junior Jeff Beaton (Haverhill, Mass.).
The Panthers dominated singles play except at the No. 2 position, where Crampton won the first set against Middlebury's Zach Bruchmiller but ultimately fell in a hard-fought match, 3-6, 6-4, 10-8.
Bates plays next plays on Friday at 3:30 p.m. at NESCAC opponent Trinity.
Middlebury plays host to Skidmore for a non-conference match next Saturday at 1 p.m.
Middlebury 8, Bates 1
April 17, 2011 at Lewiston, Maine (Wallach Tennis Center)
1. Matt Bettles/Rob Crampton (B) def. Andrew Peters/Brantner Jones (M), 8-4
2. Spencer Lunghino/David Farah (M), def. Sam Woods/Jeff Beaton (B), 9-7
3. Mike Malhame/Eric Vehovec (M) def. Peter Yanofsky/Tim Berg (B), 8-1
1. Peters (M) def. Bettles (B), 6-0, 6-1
2. Zach Bruchmiller (M) def. Crampton (B), 3-6, 6-4, 10-8
3. Alex Parower (M) def. Berg (B), 6-3, 6-2
4. Lunghino (M) def. Beaton (B), 6-3, 6-0
5. Jones (M) def. Ben Bogard (B), 6-0, 6-1
6. James Burke (M) def. Kyle DeSisto (B), 6-3, 6-4