BETHLEHEM, Pa. – As the Lehigh men’s tennis team readies to embark on its spring season in a few weeks, head coach Wouter Hendrix has announced the addition of four student-athletes who will join the Mountain Hawks in the fall. The class of 2017 is Hendrix’s first recruiting class as head coach and features players from three states.
“We needed to get deeper and we need to get better at doubles and I believe these guys will help fill that gap for us,” said Hendrix, who is about to embark on his first season as head coach after four seasons as an assistant at Lehigh. “They are all solid players and guys who can contribute right away in the middle and bottom of our lineup. We will lose our two captains to graduation, our number four and five players, but these guys should all come in ready to compete for those spots in the fall and hopefully fill their shoes in the spring.”
Ethan Bogard comes to Lehigh from Long Beach High School on New York’s Long Island. A varsity player since middle school, Bogard captained Long Beach’s team as a junior and owns an undefeated singles record over five varsity seasons at the high school level. Bogard won a Nassau County doubles championship and was named All-State while placing third at the state doubles tournament. He owns one USTA National doubles championship and four eastern section doubles titles. Bogard has a brother, Ben, who is a member of the tennis team at Bates College.
Born in New York City, Tyler Hansen and his family moved to southern California as he hails from Poway High School near San Diego. Hansen has been playing competitively since he was ten years old and is entering his fourth season on the varsity tennis team at Poway. A first team All-League selection, Hansen has also been honored by the CIF. He has been ranked as high as No. 95 nationally in his class.
A second New Yorker in the incoming class, Colin Nardella is entering his senior season at Christian Brothers Academy in Syracuse, N.Y. Nardella is currently ranked No. 21 in the Eastern Section in the boys 18 and under division. In the summer of 2012 he placed third in doubles at two national 18 and under tournaments. A co-captain at CBA, Nardella is a three time state tournament qualifier and he won a Section 3 doubles title as an eighth grader. In 2011 he won the singles consolation bracket at the state tournament.
Rounding out the class of 2017 is Jason Sutker from Berwyn, Pennsylvania and Conestoga High School. Sutker grew up playing tennis with his twin brother and older sister. He is been ranked in the top ten in the Middle State in every age group he has competed in, and has represented the Middle States in the Zone Team Championships for a number of years. Sutker is a three-time regional finalist and a national doubles open champion. He has helped lead Conestoga to a pair of state championships. Sutker was undefeated as a sophomore and was a state finalist in doubles as junior. Off the court, Sutker is an honor roll student who enjoys playing hockey and lacrosse.
“We have an experienced core to build around,” Hendrix said. “Adding these players to that group we will have a good shot at competing for a title, just as we will with this year’s team. Bogard is listed by ranking services as a top recruit in the Patriot League. He, Tyler Hansen, Nardella and Sutker are all very athletic players who are hard workers so we’re definitely excited about this class.”
The Mountain Hawks will resume practice next week in preparation for the spring season, which begins on Saturday, January 26 when Lehigh hosts Drexel at the Lewis Tennis Center at 2 p.m.
Lehigh men’s tennis class of 2017
Ethan Bogard Lido Beach, N.Y./Long Beach
Tyler Hansen Poway, Calif./Poway
Colin Nardella Manlius, N.Y./Christian Brothers Academy
Jason Sutker Berwyn, Pa./Conestoga