NEW CANAAN -- The Westhill boys tennis team is certainly heading in the right direction, but New Canaan halted the upstarts' fast start to the season by picking up a 5-2 win on its home court Monday afternoon.
Leading 3-2, it was New Canaan's No. 5 singles player Spencer Lamdin who played the role of unlikely hero. Lambdin held off Westhill's Nick Morelli for a 6-2, 3-6, 6-2 victory, sealing the match for the Rams.
Lambdin was only in the starting lineup because New Canaan's normal No. 4 Devin McVeigh was sick, moving up usual No. 5 Tim Casavant, so it was quite the afternoon for the surprise starter.
"To get that opportunity to get the win for us was a pretty cool thing," Lambdin said. "I knew that we could pull it out if we played our best and played smart. I was aware that I could win it for the team and it's a great feeling."
New Canaan got on the board first when its top doubles tandem of Patrick Newton and Jacob Reiss picked up a quick 6-1, 6-0 victory over Westhill's Bill Silk and Conor Chiusano. Westhill pulled even when No. 4 Prashant Toteja scored a 6-4, 6-0 win over Casavant.
"For years, it's always been New Canaan, Greenwich and Staples. One of the reasons we were undefeated was we hadn't played one of those three," Westhill coach Patrik Vician said. "I thought we played well today, but it wasn't about us being unbeaten. We were still heavy underdogs coming into today."
New Canaan took a 2-1 advantage when its second doubles team of Luke McDermott and Andrew Penchuk scored a 6-3, 4-6, 6-2 win over Westhill's Alex Romaine and Matt Frederick, but Westhill again pulled even when No. 3 Miles Singer picked up a 7-6 (7-4), 6-3 win over New Canaan's Tommy Worcester.
The Rams went back on top after No. 2 singles player Willie Burger, who had to wait for a court to come available, defeated Westhill's Danny Soifer 6-0, 6-0.
New Canaan's top singles player, Nick Laub, put the exclamation point on the day be defeating Westhill's Brandon Pomerance 6-7 (7-1), 6-3, 6-3 in a grueling match that lasted nearly two and half hours.
Although Westhill hadn't defeated any of the upper echelon of FCIAC teams, Laub and company weren't about to take the Vikings lightly.
"They came in undefeated. You can talk about their schedule, but they still came in here as the No. 1 team in the FCIAC and we were No. 2. Brandon is a real scrappy player and it was a real fun match for both sides," Laub said.
NEW CANAAN 5, WESTHILL 2
at New Canaan
Singles: Nick Laub (NC) def. Brandon Pomerance 6-7 (7-1), 6-3, 6-3; Willie Burger (NC) def. Danny Soifer 6-0, 6-0; Miles Singer (W) def. Tommy Worcester 7-6 (7-4), 6-3; Prashant Toteja (W) def. Tim Casavant 6-4, 6-0; Spencer Lamden (NC) def. Nick Morelli 6-2, 3-6, 6-2. Doubles: Patrick Newton/Jacob Reiss (NC) def. Bill Silk/Conor Chiusano 6-1, 6-0; Andrew Penchuk/Luke McDermottn (NC) def. Matt Frederick/Alex Romaine 6-3, 4-6, 6-2. Records: New Canaan 10-1, Westhill 8-1.