The Pomona-Pitzer men's tennis program concluded the 2017 season with all three of their representatives falling in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament. Coming in ranked 12th in the nation by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association, the Sagehens sent then-seniors Jake Yasgoor, Antony Bello, and Spencer Simonides to Chattanooga, Tennessee for the National Championship. After the tournament, the Sagehens saw five seniors graduate, including the aforementioned athletes as well as Graham Maassen and Josh Kim.
Ranked 12th in the nation by the ITA, the Sagehens will come into the season with 10 returnees, six freshmen, and two transfer students. Seniors Marko Mandic and Sam Malech and junior Josh Gearou will be counted on to be the team's workhorse, boasting solid track records in the no. 5 and no. 6 spot last season. Senior Kalyan Chadalavada who was named All-American for doubles back in 2015 will be expected to feature in both doubles and singles.
Junior Sam Gearou who has competed for a spot as a no. 6 singles player will look to solidify his position and be a key contributor for the Sagehens.
Freshman Jed Kronenberg has been making waves heading into this year, finishing up as a runner up at the ITA Summer Circuit Tournament and the Fall ITA Regional Tournament. He will be leading an exciting new class, including Jack Bernstein, Ryan Lewis, Emmett Moore, Joey Schwartz, and Nathaniel Serrurier.
Transfers Octave Bellet De Giacomoni (Irvine Valley College) and Jacob Schoenherr (University of Montana) join the Hens with resumes of high-level experience and will be counted on to contribute this year.
"Overall the team is eager and ready to start the season," said Head Coach Steve Bickham. "I have never worked with a group of guys who are as dedicated and want to play as much as these guys do. I think it is going to be a great year!"
A Shock Return
Last season's no. 1 singles player and former ITA No. 1 West Region player Jake Yasgoor will be returning to the Sagehens as an assistant coach. The class of 2017 alumnus will use his wealth of experience to help coach Bickham guide the Hens through this exciting season.
"You can't put words on what Jake did for this program," said Coach Bickham. "His leadership and record as a player here over the past four years was remarkable, especially finishing last year as the #6 player in the nation. Having him as an assistant will continue that excellence that he brought to the program as a player!"
The Sagehens will kick off the season on Saturday, February 3 against Irvine Valley College at 10:00 a.m. followed by a SCIAC matchup against Occidental College later that day at 3:00 p.m. On March 12, the Sagehens will open up the Stag-Hen Invitational with a thrilling match against No. 6 Washington University (Mo.). On March 21, the Hens will host No. 7 Williams College at 4:00 p.m.. The Hens will close the month of March with a big game against No. 3 Middlebury on the 27th at 4:00 p.m. The Sixth Street Rivalry game against No. 2 Claremont-Mudd-Scripps will be played across the street at the Biszantz Family Tennis Center on April 12 at 6:00 p.m.
For more information about the Sagehens 2018 schedule, visit the link below: