Junior Jeremy Kochman serves the ball in a tennis match against Lafayette on Monday April 13, 2015. The Mountain Hawks finished the season at 12-9. (Toni Isreal/B&W photo)

Lehigh men’s tennis falls in Patriot League Tournament quarterfinals


In a highly competitive match that exceeded three hours, the Lehigh men’s tennis team saw its season come to an end with a tough 4-3 loss to Boston University on Friday. This Patriot League quarterfinal loss put the Mountain Hawks at a record of 3-4 against league opponents.

“We definitely had an off year for us,” junior Jeremy Kochman said. “We have made the semifinals five straight years, including two finals appearances in 2011 and 2013, and we won it all in 2013.”

To prepare for the match, the team worked a lot on doubles matches, which had been giving them trouble towards the end of the regular season. In addition to this, Kochman said they focused a lot on their fitness because of how close to each other the Patriot League Tournament rounds are played.

Despite not coming out with the victory, the Mountain Hawks put up a good fight all the way through the match. After losing doubles to the Terriers, strong performances in the singles matches provided the team with a comeback opportunity.

“We showed a lot of heart and grit and I could not be more proud of how our guys fought,” freshman Jack Peterson said. “I thought we were one of the best teams in the tournament but we just didn’t get to show it.”

Senior Mitchell Peterson posted his 15th win of the season in singles and improved his record to 7-0 in league play. Singles wins from Jack Peterson and Kochman helped Lehigh even the score to 3-3 going into the last singles match.

Kochman said that the team competed very well in singles, and that the team’s overall performance gave it a strong chance.

The match came down to the final singles matchup between Lehigh’s senior Ben Gilman and Boston’s Will Kwok that exceeded the three-hour mark. Gilman won the second set 6-4 after losing the first 7-5. However, he was defeated 6-4 in the final set.

“Ben’s match was epic,” Kochman said. “He showed so much character out there. It was unfortunate he wasn’t able to pull out the win because he really deserved it.”

This quarterfinal loss ended the team’s streak of five consecutive semifinal appearances and put the team at an overall record of 12-10 for the season.

“Obviously, we were upset with the loss,” Jack Peterson said. “Every year, we have the goal of winning the Patriot League Tournament. Although we came up short, I’m happy with how we competed. We fought hard in every single match and represented Lehigh well. We need to improve doubles and everyone just has to do their part and work hard over the summer so we can bring the trophy back to Bethlehem next year.”

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