Ephs slam opponents in shutouts

Women’s tennis (15-1, 4-0 in the NESCAC) continued an impressive spring season last Sunday, shutting out both Skidmore and Conn. College. With the victories, the Ephs continue their reign as the top-ranked team in Div. III.

The women began the day against Skidmore, dropping the Thoroughbreds 9-0. Doubles teams of Kara Shoemaker ’14 and Taylor French ’12, Kristin Alotta ’12 and Kathleen Elkins ’14 and Rebecca Curran ’15 and Caroline Capute ’12 all claimed victory, setting the tone early for the Ephs.

The women went on to sweep the singles again without dropping a set. The team’s dominance was highlighted by two 6-0, 6-0 wins by Elkins and Maria Pylypiv ’15 at No. 4 and No. 6, respectively.

Williams continued its win streak against Conn. College later that afternoon. Capute and Nancy Worley ’13 teamed up to handily win their doubles match in the second slot despite playing together for the first time. Curran and Veranika Li ’13 also pulled off a handy 8-1 win in the third doubles position. French and Shoemaker, the usual first doubles tandem, dropped their Conn. College counterparts 8-0.

The women then swept the singles matches, losing only four games total to the opposition. Curran and Monica Pastor ’15 at No. 4 and No. 6, respectively, each contributed two 6-0 wins.

Head Coach Alison Swain ’01 praised her team’s excellent performance. “The team performed exceptionally well on Sunday,” she said. “It was exciting to have every player compete in the lineup between the two matches and truly contribute to our 9-0, 9-0 results. We have had two weeks off since our last match, and it was apparent on Sunday that the things we have been working on in practice for the past two weeks are showing up in matches in a tangible way.”

Alotta’s two singles wins on the weekend were especially sweet: The senior is now tied with Kate Troy ’04 for most singles wins in a career in the team’s history. Alotta’s first chance to surpass the record will be tonight, when Williams plays host to an undefeated Middlebury team currently ranked 10th nationally.

“The team is very excited for our match against Middlebury,” Swain said. “The fact that they are undefeated and coming off a big win versus Emory makes [it] clear that Middlebury is one of the very top teams in the country, if not the top team. We know it’s going to be an exciting and challenging match, but our team truly thrives on playing in pressure situations and playing teams that can push us competitively.”

The women face the Panthers at home at 4 p.m. today. “We are hoping for a big fan turnout at Middlebury’s match on Wednesday as it will truly be two of the very best teams in the country battling on court,” Swain said. Following the match against Middlebury, Williams will travel to Tufts for a 1 p.m. match on Saturday before hosting Rochester at 10 a.m. on Sunday.