BRUNSWICK, Maine -- The Bates men's tennis team scored a 5-4 upset win at No. 11 nationally ranked Bowdoin on Wednesday, the Bobcats' first against the rival Polar Bears since 2007.
It's almost as if falling out of the national rankings for the first time in years was just what the Bobcats needed: since the most recent ITA Division III poll came out on April 10, Bates is 3-2, all against opponents who are ranked, with wins over No. 28 Tufts, No. 30 Brandeis and now the 11th-ranked Polar Bears. One of the losses was a very close 6-3 decision at No. 5 Williams.
The Bobcats improve to 7-8 (3-3 NESCAC) while the Polar Bears fall to 9-7 (4-3 NESCAC) with the loss.
Bates dominated doubles play and put itself in great position with a trio of wins. Senior Timmy Berg (Bradenton, Fla.) and junior Pierre Planche (Natick, Mass.) won 9-7 at #1, seniors Peter Yanofsky (Belmont, Mass.) and Ben Bogard (Lido Beach, N.Y.) won 8-4 at #2 and senior Eric Ruta (Ridgewood, N.J.) and junior Henry Lee (Sag Harbor, N.Y.) completed the sweep with a 9-7 win at #3.
The Polar Bears rallied in singles play, winning four of the first five completed matches. Luke Trinka (6-1, 6-3) at #2, Sam King (6-4, 6-1) at #3, Chris Lord (6-1, 6-0) at #4 and Hugh Mo (6-4, 6-2) at #6 put Bowdoin right back into contention. Bates stymied the Bowdoin rally with a win at #5 from first-year Patrick Ordway (Falmouth, Maine), 6-4, 6-4, setting the stage for #1 singles.
Berg and Noah Bragg for Bowdoin battled in the tightest match of the night, with Berg holding off Bragg in a pair of tiebreakers to take the 7-6 (4), 7-6 (3) win and clinch the match for the Bobcats.
Bates 5, Bowdoin 4
April 23, 2014 at Bowdoin
1) Berg/Planche (Bates) def. King/Trinka (Bowdoin) 8-6
2) Yanofsky/Bogard (Bates) def. Wolstencroft/Bragg (Bowdoin) 8-4
3) Ruta/Lee (Bates) def. Lord/Savage (Bowdoin) 9-7
1) Berg (Bates) def. Bragg (Bowdoin) 7-6 (4), 7-6 (3)
2) Trinka (Bowdoin) def. Planche (Bates) 6-1, 6-3
3) King (Bowdoin) def. Feldman (Bates) 6-4, 6-1
4) Lord (Bowdoin) def. Lee (Bates) 6-1, 6-0
5) Ordway (Bates) def. Wolstencroft (Bowdoin) 6-4, 6-4
6) Mo (Bowdoin) def. Bardan (Bates) 6-4, 6-2