Deerfield tennis too strong for McDonogh in 5-2 win Colvin, Chiu victories too little, too late for Eagles

June 12, 1996|By Phil Jackman | Phil Jackman,SUN STAFF

It took about the same time for "The Match" for the National Prep Team Tennis Championship to be decided yesterday as it took to read this far. Deerfield Academy coach Jay Morsuch wasn't kidding when he sent word out of the hills of Western Massachusetts last week that "we have depth."

Host McDonogh and Deerfield, both unbeaten through three matches after the morning pairings, squared off first in three doubles pairings worth one point. McDonogh's top tandem of Nick Colvin and Chris Chiu bested Ogden Phipps and Nick Aquavella in a pro set, 8-5, then the cheering stopped.

Deerfield won the other two doubles matches to gain the point, then Rick Morgan, Ned Bender and Andrew Norton jumped into singles and rumbled past the Eagles' Jon Rodriguez, Richie Granat and Greg Krieger in straight sets, losing just nine of 45 games.

As quickly as that, Deerfield grabbed the first four points and clinched the match, which it eventually won 5-2.

"We're a veteran team, three of the players having played for three seasons and Phipps having been with me for four," said the coach. "Our No. 3 [Morgan] has lost just one dual match in three years. That's how solid we are."

McDonogh had shown a solid and deep lineup all year while plundering the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference for the fifth straight year and going 17-1. But Deerfield's pool of talent seemed almost bottomless.

"We just don't lose at 3-4-5-6," said Morsuch. "We were the best team in New England by far."

The match was already lost when McDonogh's lead guys, Colvin and Chiu, finished their first set, and there was more bad news: each lost that first set, Chiu tasting defeat in a set for the first time all season after winning 48 in a row.

Ogden and Aquavella were on their games. For awhile. Colvin came back from 1-6 to win 6-4 and 6-3, remaining unbeaten in the competition among the No. 1s of the six competing schools. Chiu, after bowing, 6-4, served up a double bagel to Aquavella in the second and third sets. Chris Bonner of the visitors then beat David Katz of McDonogh, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3.

This being a team competition, individual accomplishments don't mean that much. But don't tell that to the players like Colvin, who meets also-unbeaten Justin Gagnon of Greenhill, Texas, today and Chiu, who is 25-0 as a freshman this year with one match to play.

Besides McDonogh (3-1) vs. Greenhill (2-2), Deerfield (4-0) takes on Lawrenceville (3-1) and Choate (0-4) meets Western Reserve (0-4).

Pub Date: 6/12/96

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