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Crampton, Bettles become two-time All-Americans at NCAAs

Matt Bettles '13 rooted teammate Rob Crampton '13 on through two singles victories before teaming up with him to win in the Round of 16 in doubles play. (File photo by Phyllis Graber Jensen)

CARY, N.C. -- The last time Bates junior Matt Bettles played with his doubles partner, Bates junior Rob Crampton, Bettles had one All-America honor to his name and Crampton had none. After they were done defeating Robert Kjellberg and Alexey Rumyantsev of North Carolina Wesleyan on Thursday, both Bettles and Crampton were two-time All-Americans.

Crampton (Wilton, Conn.) kicked off the Bates tennis teams’ excursion to the 2012 NCAA Division III Championships by becoming the eighth All-American in team history, winning his first-round match in singles play on Thursday morning and winning again on Thursday afternoon in the Round of 16. Finally, in his third match of the day, Crampton teamed up with Bettles (Taunton, England) to win in the Round of 16 in the doubles championship.

Crampton came back resoundingly from a set down to defeat Mya Smith-Dennis of Gustavus Adolphus in the Round of 32 of the men’s singles championship by a score of 3-6, 6-3, 6-2, securing his first career All-America award. Crampton advanced to the Round of 16 to face Eric Shulman of Christopher Newport University, and eliminated Shulman from the field with relative ease, by a 6-3, 6-1 score. Crampton will play in the quarterfinals of the singles draw on Friday at 9am, against Felix Sun of Williams, the NESCAC Player of the Year.

After a brief rest, Crampton and Bettles made it to the quarterfinals of the doubles tournament with the win over NC Wesleyan, immediately becoming Bates' third All-America doubles team, after Will Boe-Wiegaard '06 and Tristan Beach '06 and Ben Stein '09 and Amrit Rupasinghe '10. Bettles and Crampton face Smith-Dennis and Amrik Donkena of Gustavus Adolphus on Friday, not before 2pm. The semifinals and finals take place Sunday.

Also Thursday evening, Bates’ first women’s competitors at an NCAA championship, the doubles pair of senior Meg Anderson (Cohasset, Mass.) and first-year Elena Mandzhukova (Lisbon, Portugal), came up short in their quest for All-America honors against Claremont-Mudd-Scripps duo Kristin Lim and Jessie Huang, as Lim and Huang advanced to the quarterfinals with a 6-2, 6-2 win over the Bates pair.

Crampton joined Bates’ All-Americans list, the most recent member of which was Bettles, who also reached the Round of 16 in the NCAA singles championship in 2011. The others on the list are Rupasinghe, Stein, Beach, Boe-Wiegaard, current head coach Paul Gastonguay ’89 and Buddy Schultz ’81.

Find links to championship brackets and live results.

Some of the action at the Cary Tennis Park can be followed via live video streaming.

The tournament is co-hosted by Meredith College and the Town of Cary.