One For The Record Books: Senior Reed Hagmann Reaches Semifinals Of ITA Regional Tournament

Steve Sheridan

Now in his fourth season on the Raider men’s tennis team, senior Reed Hagmann is used to setting Colgate records. In his first season at Colgate, Hagmann had one of the best individual seasons in school history, finishing 19-10 after playing primarily at first singles. He then smashed that mark in the 2003-2004 season, setting a school record for singles victories after a 29-8 campaign. Last season, Hagmann also became the first Raider player to reach the quarterfinals of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Northeast Regional Tournament. But this season, the three-time all-Patriot League first team member made some more history. Hagmann became the first Raider to reach the semifinals of the ITA Regionals, defeating ninth-seeded Brandon Wai of Yale, 6-2, 5-7, 7-6 (6) to reach the final four. “When I reached the semifinals, I was ecstatic,” Hagmann said.”I had to play some very tough matches in order to reach that round, which made it very rewarding.” Hagmann, the fourth seed in the tournament, received a bye in the opening round and then proceeded to sweep through his next three matches without losing a set. The Short Hills, NJ native defeated Andrew Lieu of Princeton in the Round of 64, 6-4, 7-6 (5), then took out Dartmouth’s Jeff Schechtman, 6-4, 6-1. In the Round of 16, Hagmann set up his quarterfinal date with Wai by besting 11th-seeded Mark Barry of Penn State, 6-4, 6-4. This in itself was an accomplishment for Hagmann, as Barry plays first singles for the second-ranked team in the region. Against Wai, Hagmann started off very strong and ended just as strong. The Raiders’ first singles star cruised through the first set, dropping only two of eight games. Wai fought back in the second set, however, as he managed to break Hagmann once to set up the decisive third set. The two participants did not disappoint in the final frame, battling until the final point. In the last set, Hagmann found himself in an early hole, down 1-3 and love-30 on Wai’s serve. The senior stormed back, however, ripping off four consecutive games to take a 5-3 lead and positioning himself to serve for the match. Wai would not go quietly, though, breaking Hagmann’s serve and holding on his turn to force Hagmann into a 6-5 hole. But Hagmann again responded, holding his serve in a pressure-packed situation to send the match to a tiebreaker. After trading points, Hagmann held a 4-3 lead before Wai took three consecutive points to give him a 6-4 lead and two very daunting match points. But the Raider senior would not be denied on the day, mustering a final four-point streak of his own that ended with a service winner to finish off the match. “My match against Wai was definitely the most intense match I played during the tournament,” Hagmann said.”I felt a lot of pressure in the third set, especially when he took the lead. He was playing extremely well and I knew it would be difficult to come back when I lost my serve to go down 3-1.” With the victory, Hagmann moved into the semifinal round, the first time in school history a Raider player has gone that far into the bracket. In the semifinal, Hagmann faced off with top-seeded Jonathan Chu of Harvard. In last season’s tournament, Hagmann bested top-seeded Andreas Lauland in the Round of 16, but that win never entered his mind against Chu. “I never really thought about my win over Lauland last year,” Hagmann conceded.”I tried to just focus on the match that I was playing.” But in the semifinal match, all the confidence in the world could not help Hagmann, as Chu advanced to the finals with a 6-1, 6-4 victory. The Harvard senior cruised through the opening set and broke Hagmann once in the second set to take his spot in the championship round. Despite the loss, this tournament proves to Hagmann and the rest of the region what an excellent player he is. Colgate’s first singles star went 10-3 this fall, including six wins over ranked opponents, and will likely set a new school record for highest regional ranking. In a field that began with 128 players, Hagmann ended up in the top four – not a bad finish. If there is one negative to the end of the tournament, it is that Hagmann, a senior, will not be back here next year. “This has always been the biggest individual tournament of the year and I have been fortunate to do well in it throughout my career at Colgate,” Hagmann said.”However, it doesn’t come close to comparing with the Patriot League Tournament in the spring. That’s the reason why I am playing collegiate tennis, forthe opportunityto win the Patriot League and to compete in the NCAA Tournament.”