The women?s tennis team didn?t drop a match in singles play ,getting off to a fantastic start on Thursday in its first home match of the season against California University of Pennsylvania. The Tartans came away with an 8?1 victory, creating a great way for the Tartan women to open their season and an impressive first win on newly refinished courts.
Last weekend, the team started its season at the Carnegie Mellon Invitational. However, since its home courts were in an unplayable condition, the tournament was moved to neighboring Robert Morris University. The Tartans faced stiff NCAA
Division I competition against local schools Pittsburgh, Duquesne, and Robert Morris, and held their own, helping to prepare them for their eventual home opener against CUP.
The game started with doubles play, which proved a good round for CMU. Two of their three pairs were victorious. The riveting match between CMU?s junior Mai Otsuka and senior Alison Liu versus CUP?s Lauren Hovey and Daniella Zevallos particularly drew the attention of fans when the set continued long after other matches had completed.
Spectators amassed to watch intently as Otsuka and Liu fought hard through a close match, battling back and forth and exchanging the lead several times. The two teams fought to even the score at eight apiece, forcing a tiebreaker. However, in the end, Otsuka and Liu pushed through and won the tiebreaking set 7?5 to earn the victory. Also victorious was the number one doubles team of sophomore Amy Staloch and first-year Sheena David.
After the doubles, the teams moved on to singles matches, where Carnegie Mellon pulled away in a dominating fashion.
?I felt that the entire team kept it together through out both doubles and especially singles; everyone did their part and it turned out to be an awesome first home match,? said David, who defeated CUP?s Jessica Brown 6?2 in the first set and 6?1 in the second.
True to form, each Tartan player fought and won both sets in her match. Through doubles and singles, the Tartans showed both strength and character. After the match the players were happy with themselves and each other regarding their performance.
?Even though we didn?t win all the doubles, all the girls did incredibly well in the singles. Everyone won in the singles, which was awesome. Overall, this past Thursday?s match was a great way to start off the season,? remarked first-year Kelly Nakamura, who defeated CUP?s Lauren Hovey 6?1 in straight sets at fourth singles.
The team is back in action this week at the ITA Regional Tournament, September 23?25. The tournament will be held at Mary Washington College.