Friday, April 13, 2012

Harvard Men's Tennis "News and Views"

Harvard Men's Tennis News and Views


In this issue:

Preview of Penn & Princeton

Recap of last weekend's Ivy Matches

Shout out to alums

Board of Overseer and Executive Director Elections (Tracy Palandjian and Scott Mead)

Harvard Tennis and the Titantic

Donating to Harvard Tennis


Preview of Upcoming Weekend Ivy Matches

#24 Harvard Crimson (16-2) battles for the Ancient Eight Crown against Penn and Princeton this Saturday and Sunday at the Beren Center at 2pm.  Come out and support your team!   Penn is 9-7 and 1-2 in the Ivy League after notching a big win against the Brown Bears last weekend.  Princeton is 12-8 and 3-0 in the Ivy League.  There is not a special parking fee being charged this weekend (unlike some other weekends!).  There is regular metered parking available for visitors and fans.


Recap of Last Weekend's Ivy Matches

In the first weekend of Ivy League action, the Crimson downed the Big Red 7-0 in Ithaca before falling in a thriller, 5-2, to the Columbia Lions at the Dick Savitt Tennis Center.   


On Saturday in Ithaca, the team put together an excellent performance from start to finish.   While our top doubles duo of Alistair Felton and Casey MacMaster were bested on the day, the other doubles pairings came up aces.  Pearlman and Schultz evened the score with a win at #2 – sending all the fans to watch Andy and Denis Nguyen capture the decider at #3 and put Harvard ahead 1-0.   Singles was an excellent performance with wins in all six singles positions.  The team adapted beautifully to the fast indoor courts at the Reis Tennis Center in Upstate, NY and left town with an excellent Italian meal at Ciao's waiting for them in the bus.


On Easter Sunday, the storyline was not how we had scripted it in our imagination.   The Crimson went out and wrested the doubles point after a raucous start for the Columbia Lions.  The point came down to Pearlman and Schultz whose clutch serving allowed them to escape 7-5 in the tie-breaker for the win. Felton and MacMaster rebounded brilliantly from the previous day and came back from an early break to win at the top spot 8-5 while the Nguyens fell at #3. 


In singles, it was a tough sledding.  We split the top two singles slots as Denis Nguyen defeated Haig Schneiderman in straight sets while Jon Pearlman lost to Winston Lin.    From that point forward, everything seemed to tilt for the Lions. Their inspired tennis was contagious.   Drawing on their crowd and some career performances, the four remaining Lions roared to victory from #3 to #6.  It was a bitter pill to swallow as our 13-match win streak was snapped.  After a long bus ride home (and I mean long), the team went back to work this week hungry for redemption.


Shout out to alums


Thanks for all those who came out this past weekend including Kunj Majmudar and Mike Passarella, Cliff Adler, Bob Horne and his two daughters (and probably forgetting others due to the stress!) who watched the Columbia match, as well as the parents in the crowd including Bill and Sandra Rueb and Sheila Steer. 


Board of Overseers/Executive Director Elections (Tracy Palandjian and Scott Mead)


In a shameless –but deserved - plug for two members of our Harvard Tennis family, may we suggest, nudge, and prod you to consider voting for two special people.  Tracy Pun Palandjian '93 (the wife of Leon Palandjian '90 and sister-in-law to Peter and Paul) is running for the Board of Overseers.  Tracy is the CEO and co-founder of Social Finance, Inc. and former partner at the Parthenon Group. She is also a mother of 3 amazing daughters (whom I teach!). 


Scott Mead '77 has a long history in athletics and with Harvard Tennis and Squash.  Scott competed in squash for Dave and the late, great Jack Barnaby in Hemenway Gym.  Scott would go on to have a successful career in finance in London and is now an avid tennis player and photographer.   His son, Alex, is a freshman at Harvard and his daughter is a recent graduate.  In support of his college athletic experience and the lessons he learned on the courts, Scott recently endowed the Head Coach of Tennis position.  He is the only one the ballot for the Executive Director position that has an affiliation with athletics and he would be a great advocate for the college athletic experience in general and tennis in particular.


You can see the ballot online by clicking here.


Start stuffing the ballot box! 


Harvard Tennis and the Titanic.   Alex Seaver caught this recent article in Sports Illustrated about American tennis champion Richard "Dick" Williams (and not Venus and Serena's father!) who survived the Titantic disaster swimming and clinging to a collapsible boat for four hours in the freezing Atlantic until he was rescued by the R.M.S. Carpathia.  Dick would go on to be a star for the Harvard tennis team, NCAA Champion, U.S. National Champion and member of the U.S. Davis Cup Team.  It is an inspiring read.  


CLICK HERE to support Harvard Tennis!

All gifts to the Harvard Athletics Friends groups will receive Class Credit. The Department of Harvard Athletics, the Friends groups and Harvard Varsity Club encourage all alumni to make an additional gift to the Harvard College Fund to support the overall experience for our student-athletes, which includes the College's commitment to financial aid.


Dave Fish
E. Scott Mead Family Head Coach of Men's Tennis
Harvard University Dept of Athletics
Murr Center
65 N. Harvard St.
Boston, MA 02163

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