MIDDLEBURY, CT – The Western Connecticut State University men's tennis team lost a breathtaking 6-3 decision to visiting Little East Conference nemesis Salem State on Saturday at the Middlebury Racquet Club. With the loss, the Colonials dropped to 3-11 overall and 3-4 in league play, while the Vikings improved to 8-4 and 6-1.
The Colonials held a 2-1 lead after doubles play. Senior Chauncey Allers (Wilton, CT) teamed up with sophomore Matthew Carino (Sandy Hook, CT) to win a dramatic contest, 8-7, before junior Myckland Cothias (Danbury, CT) and rookie Jay Kilcourse (New Fairfield, CT) registered an 8-4 victory.
Carino notched the lone singles win for the Colonials. Allers put forth a tremendous effort but fell in a third set tie-breaker. Cothias posted an equally exciting match. However, he would also suffer a heartbreaking defeat.
"We were right there, ahead in the last two remaining matches. We knew the match would be close even to a strong team like Salem State. I'm proud of the fight that our guys put forward. This was a good match to prepare us for playoffs," said WestConn head coach Shawn Stillman following the action.
The Colonials captured the No. 5 seed in the upcoming LEC Postseason Championship Tournament. They will travel to No. 4 UMass-Dartmouth on Tuesday. Third-seeded Rhode Island College hosts sixth-seeded Bridgewater State in the other first round matchup. UMass-Boston earned the top spot, while Salem State claimed the No. 2 slot. Both teams earned a bye. The semifinals and championship rounds will be played at UMass-Boston beginning Friday. With a win on Tuesday, the Colonials would move on to meet the Beacons.