Women’s tennis defeats Johns Hopkins 6–3, stopped by Pitt 7–2

This past week, the Carnegie Mellon women’s tennis team, ranked 10th in the nation in Division III, took on two tough opponents on their home courts. On Easter Sunday, the Tartans took on number-13 rival Johns Hopkins University in what proved to be a strong win for the Tartans. Just a few days later, the Tartans clashed with the women of the University of Pittsburgh in a friendly scrimmage to prepare for the upcoming UAA Championships.

After watching the men’s team defeat Hopkins in an upset, the women were set to take the court on a beautiful day. Firing on all cylinders, the Tartans wasted no time establishing themselves in this match.

The doubles team of junior Ashley Herrick and sophomore Laura Chen overpowered their opponents at first doubles by a score of 8–2. Not long after, the third doubles team of junior Jennifer Chui and sophomore Cze-Ja Tam was victorious by a score of 8–6. Sophomore Courtney Chin and first-year Alexandra Tapak, at second doubles, completed the sweep by taking their match by a score of 8–6.

Staked to a 3–0 lead from doubles, the Tartans looked to be in good shape going into singles play. However, the Blue Jays rallied and closed the gap, as the Tartans suffered a quick loss at sixth singles and a devastating three-set loss at second singles. The Tartans responded quickly, notching a key win at fifth singles by Tam to make the match 4–2. Playing at first singles, Chen delivered the deciding match by coming out on top by a score of 6–2, 6–2. With the day already won, the Tartans lost at third and fourth singles, both in deciding-match tiebreakers.

Coming off a victory, the Tartans were confident going into their scrimmage with the University of Pittsburgh. With a multitude of spectators looking on, the Tartans fought hard in doubles, but dropped two out of the three to go down 2–1. The doubles team of Tapak and Chin recorded the lone win with a score of 8–5.

Needing four out of the six singles to win, things were looking bleak for the Tartans. Carnegie Mellon quickly dropped two singles matches, putting them in an almost insurmountable 4–1 hole. Wins at second and fifth singles by Chin and Tam, respectively, gave the Tartans some hope with two matches to go. However, a tough loss at first singles sealed the deal and led to the Panthers topping the Tartans by a score of 6–3.

Although it was only a scrimmage, the players fought hard and viewed this match as a learning experience. “I’m glad we played such a strong Division I team,” Chen said. “It will really help prepare us for our huge UAA tournament coming up, in which we’ll play some of the best teams in the country.”

The Tartans will next compete at the UAA Championships, held at Case Western Reserve University April 16–18, in the hope of capturing a regional title.