The men’s tennis team lost to Stevens Institute of Technology 5–1 in the Empire 8 Championship game on May 8. They made it to the championship game after defeating St. John Fisher College 5–0 May 7.
Senior Chris Hayes said despite the lost, he was proud of the team.
“We competed hard, that’s all I could really ask for,” Hayes said. “Stevens is a quality team, and they deserved to win.”
Against St. John Fisher, freshman Michael Gardiner and junior Nate Wolf teamed up in third doubles to defeat freshman John Miller and sophomore Jonathan Harper of St. John Fisher 8–2. Gardiner would translate into singles with ease, not dropping a game in first singles, winning 6–1 and 6–3 against sophomore Kevin Kulawiec.
Junior Wes Davis also posted two wins in the Empire 8 semifinal match. Davis teamed up with Hayes in first doubles to take down freshman Quinn Magiera and Kulawiec 8–3. Davis then squared off against junior Jacob Zarzycki in third singles. Davis took the first set 6–2 and then would seal the win for the South Hill squad with a 2–1 victory in the second set.
The team of freshman Stefan Lazarevic and sophomore Lorenzo Viguie-Ramos would finish the sweep in doubles with an 8–4 victory over Zarzycki and junior Adam Moran.
In the championship game, the day started off good for the Bombers, as Gardiner and Wolf defeated Ducks senior Jacob Thigpen and freshman Divin Sarthak. The set ended with a score of 9–8, causing a tie breaker to be played, since the match has to be won by two or more points. The tiebreaker ended with a score of 7–5.
The two other doubles teams, consisting of Hayes and Davis in first doubles and Viguie-Ramos and Lazarevic in second doubles, were both defeated 8–3.
The Bombers would go on to lose all six singles matches. Gardiner had the closest singles match of the day against Stevens senior Matthew Heinrich, with scores of 6–2 and 6–1.
Wolf competed against Ducks senior Ben Foran, and Viguie-Ramos played against sophomore David Schulz. Both Bombers lost by scores of 6–2 and 6–0.
Hayes lost his last match as a Bomber against the Stevens sophomore Danny Polk with scores of 6–0 and 5–2. The third set went unfinished. Hayes finished his career with 108 total wins.
Davis and junior Brandon Buksbaum both were unable to finish their matches as Stevens had already won the championship. The Bombers finished the season with a 13–6 record.
Hayes, the only senior on the team, said the team has come a long way this year from where they started.
“It’s hard to describe my feelings about my last match,” Hayes said. “It stinks that it ended the same way it has for the past three years, but I’m really happy about what this team has accomplished this year.”