Mar 24, 2019

Leach and Lemaitre Lead Bruins Against No. 2 Middlebury

A Winning Tradition

 
  • One NWC Player of the Year (Spencer Watanabe, 2017-18)
  • Six Northwest Conference Tournament Appearances (2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2018)
  • Three All-Americans
  • 33 All-NWC Athletes
 

CLAREMONT --- Will Leach and Luke Lemaitre grabbed the Bruins' two points against No. 2-ranked Middlebury College on Sunday, as the No. 28-ranked George Fox men's tennis team fell to the top-ranked Panthers, 7-2.

Recap:

With its fourth match in three days, the George Fox men's tennis team had their hands full against the 2018 defending national champions. Middlebury started the match with a sweep in doubles play to take an early 3-0 lead. Despite the 3-0 score, the Bruins played the Panthers tight through all three points. Leach and Keaten Baker teamed up against the Panthers' No. 1 team in an 8-7 battle. Alex Namba and Lemaitre fell at the No. 2 spot in a back-and-forth 8-6 match. Payton Namba and Thierry Van Os also had a tight match at the No. 3 spot, but fell 8-5.

The Panthers sealed the match with wins at the No. 5 and 6 spots in singles to become the first team to five points. They went on to pull off wins at the No. 3 and 4 spots to extend their lead, but Leach and Lemaitre would not go down without a fight.

In fact, Leach won a three-setter against Panthers' Cuba Lubomir, who is the defending national champion in singles play. Leach dropped the first set, 4-6, but bounced back with a huge win second-set win at 6-3. He was dominant in the tiebreaker and was able to pull away with a 1-0 (10-8) victory. Lemaitre's match had less drama, as he came out swinging at No. 2 singles. Lemaitre beat Panthers' Noah Farrell, 6-3, 6-2, to give the Bruins their final point of the match.

Middlebury keeps its perfect record alive at 7-0 on the season.

"Although it was a loss, it was a huge step forward for us," said head coach Neal Ninteman. "It showed us that we can indeed play with the best in the nation."

What It Means:

This marked the Bruins second top-ranked match in the four-game span in California. The Bruins are now 5-6 on the season.

What Comes Next:

The Bruins will face Colby and Whittier in the rare doubleheader on Monday, March 25, at 11 am and 5 pm, respectively.