Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Bowdoin @ Redlands Preview

Someone who doesn't follow D3 tennis closely may ask why this is such a big match. Both of these teams have been fixtures in the NCAA tournament for a very long time, yet both of them don't have promising NCAA outlooks and it's just the middle of March. I don't think either of these teams have the potential to win their conference tournament so they have to look to Pool C for bids. Redlands started slow but they seem to be playing better the last few matches and Bowdoin lost a match to Trinity (TX), a loss which they really couldn't afford. I see this as a must win for both teams, although I think Bowdoin needs it more than Redlands since the Bulldogs still have opportunities to knock off some big time opponents. The question mark for me is where is Pena for Bowdoin? He's a defending NCAA doubles finalist and one of the most valuable players in the country. Starting with doubles, I think Redlands will come out ahead on their home courts. Sullivan should run through Spearman to even the score at 2-2 and I would expect Redlands to strike back at #2. Liebman has been great all season and I would expect him to give Redlands 4-2 lead. I'd also expect the Bulldogs to win at least 1 of the bottom 3 spots. I'm going with Redlands 5-4 in this.