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Ask the Experts
Quick Takes with Middlebury Coach Dave Schwarz

Special from NBC Sports
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Just a month ago, the Middlebury men's tennis team hoisted its 2010 NCAA Championship trophy, the second team title for the Panthers. Harry Cicma of NBC Sports fired off a few questions to Middlebury Head Coach Dave Schwarz shortly after his championship.

 

Questions and Answers

Harry Cicma (HC): How does it feel to bring another National Championship back to Middlebury College? Your first NCAA title came back in 2004, with a win over NESCAC foe Williams College in the finals; how would you compare the 2004 run to this year's?

Schwarz (far right) with Middlebury team
courtesy, Middlebury athletics
Dave Schwarz (DS): There is nothing like the first one. But when you chase the second one, you realize how hard winning a national championship truly is.

Division III gets stronger every year, both with the quality of the players and the quality of the coaches. My 2004 team was great, but that team wasn't undefeated in Division III play. This team was undefeated - and we played an extremely hard schedule.

Watching my 2010 team play in the final, I was amazed at the level of play. And I see them every day. Santa Cruz, Emory, Wash U, all have and have had teams that would be in the top half of Division I teams for sure. And obviously, teams like Claremont, Amherst, Williams, and others are right there with them.

 

HC: You ended the season with a 19-match win streak. What lead to this unbelievable finish in 2010?

DS: They had a goal of being a good tennis team together, and they were willing to put in the work to make it happen. Not so much the time - though that was part of it. But more the energy. This team was actually willing to try to be good. And they were. That is all you can ask for as a coach.

 

HC: How does the future look for Middlebury Tennis?

DS: We graduate six of our top seven, so things will be a little different next year. But we have lost a lot of guys in other years and been pretty competitive, so I think we will be ok.

I think some of the younger guys are ready to take ownership of this team. We have a few good recruits coming in, but the younger guys from this year's team need to show the way.

The 2010 team was unique in that it was the most senior-dominated team that I have coached. They all lived together and were best friends.

 

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About Harry Cicma

When it comes to college tennis, Harry Cicma is your man. Cicma covers tennis and other athletic stories for NBC Sports, writing articles and producing video segments.

He is co-founder and host of World Tennis a weekly tennis show on NESN, and host of of Tennis Live Radio's College Corner.

Cicma competed as a junior in USTA/New England and went on to play college tennis at Rutgers University. As a professional, Cicma competed at the ATP Newport tournament and the San Jose Siebel Open. He reached a career-high #75 in the ATP doubles team rankings and #1262 in the ATP Entry System.

In media, Cicma has run the gamut. He has worked for NBC, CBS, ABC, ESPN, FOX Sports Net, the Tennis Channel, and World Team Tennis. Cicma has announced NCAA sports as well as the US Open Tennis Championships on both TV and radio.

 
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Page updated on Sunday, November 23, 2014
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