Women’s tennis team has mixed results at ITA Championship
This weekend the ninth-ranked Carnegie Mellon University women’s tennis team played in the 2014 ITA National Team Indoor Championship. They had a fantastic run, beating 12th-ranked Washington University in St. Louis in the quarterfinals and eighth-ranked University of Chicago in the semifinals before facing Johns Hopkins University in a rematch of last year’s championships, where the Tartans fell 5–4 to the Blue Jays.
On Friday against Washington, the Tartans took care of business against another nationally-ranked opponent, easily dispatching the Bears 6–3 and moving on to their sixth straight semifinal.
Junior Bryn Raschke and first-year Vanessa Pavia set the tone for the match, winning the number-one doubles match 8–3 and getting help from senior Katie Cecil and first-year Nicholle Torres in the third doubles game to give Carnegie Mellon the early 2–1 lead. Junior Angela Pratt, along with Pavia, Torres, and Cecil, each won her singles match to seal the victory. It was a swift win for the Tartans, with only Pavia needing more than two sets to dispatch her opponent. The two losing Tartans, sophomores Brooke Tsu and Elizabeth Martin, both forced tiebreaker sets before finally failing.
Saturday saw Carnegie Mellon dispatch University of Chicago, 7–2, to punch their ticket to their third consecutive finals match. Rashcke and Pavia, along with Torres and new partner, junior Lydia Utkin, continued their winning ways, taking their doubles matches again.
The only real difference for the Tartans between this game and the previous one against Washington was how five of the women took their singles matchups. Pratt, Cecil, Torres and Martin all won in straight sets. Pavia dropped her first set, but then battled back to take the last two sets and the victory.
On Sunday, Carnegie Mellon hoped to revenge last year’s loss against Johns Hopkins University, but a slow start in the doubles matches set the tone for the match that ultimately ended in more heartbreak for the Tartans. Pavia and Raschke continued their doubles winning streak, but required a tiebreaker to pull out the win. Utkin and Torres had a bad day, getting destroyed 1–8.
The Tartans tried to mount a comeback in the singles matches, but Tsu and Pratt fell in straight sets. Pavia, being in the opposite position from the day before, won her first set before dropping the next two, clinching the victory for the Blue Jays, who ultimately went on to win 8–1 after sweeping the rest of the singles matches.
While this loss is a disappointment for the team, they still have the outdoor season ahead of them as they work toward the UAA Championships in late April.