Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Breaking Down the Final

A dream final tomorrow between the 2 best teams in the country. They both deserve to be here and something has to give. Amherst has been to 3 consecutive finals, but the past 2 times they were up against a superior team. Now, they are up against an equivalent team and need to grind out a win. Something has to give tomorrow and many will remember the epic quarterfinal these 2 teams played last year. Emory swept doubles and ended up losing, and I'm pretty sure that is the only time in the 5 years of the 9-point system that's happened to Emory.

Chris Goodwin's only D3 singles loss in his 3 year career was to Mark Kahan last year. Those 2 will meet tomorrow. Dillon Pottish's only D3 singles loss in his 2 year career was to Austin Chafetz last year. Pottish, Goodwin and Egan are now a combined 43-0 this year in singles play. If all 3 of them win, that means Amherst needs 5 of the 6 remaining matches, a very tall task against an Emory team with a very formidable 1 and 3 doubles team and a not too shabby bottom of the lineup either. Amherst desperately needs 2 of the doubles matches. The other thing that's interesting to me is that Moritz Koenig isn't starting singles. I think it's a questionable to move to bench your senior captain who pretty much single handedly took you to the final last year with 2 ridiculous wins. He would be up against Noah Simonson tomorrow, the same player he beat last year to clinch the match against Emory. No disrespect to Andrew Jung, I just think it's a shocker Koenig is not in the lineup.

If Amherst gets up 2-1, it's anyone's match. But to beat Emory, you have 2 choices: get up in doubles or beat their top 2. Neither of those is easy, but the first is easier. Emory has done a great job winning close doubles matches this year, see the CMS match and today. You can't count on getting down in dubs and then winning 3 through 6 against the Eagles, so Amherst needs to start well and grab the lead.

I like Herst to win at 1 and 2 doubles, and I think Chafetz steps up tomorrow and gets a win against Egan, couple with wins at 4 and 6 to give Amherst the title in a really close 5-3 or 5-4. It really is anyone's match, but doubles is the key for both teams because of the depth and quality of both singles lineups.