Last weekend, women’s tennis (1-0) hosted Bowdoin, Middlebury, Skidmore and Vassar in the Lindsay Morehouse Invitational Tournament. Played in memory of Lindsay Morehouse ’00 who died in the attacks on the Twin Towers on Sept. 11, 2001, the tournament is a round robin event with both singles and doubles play. This tournament is a chance for teams to showcase their talent and allow all players on their roster to participate, as no individual tournament winner is named at the end of the two days.
Play was forced inside on Saturday because of rain, but the Williams players still excelled, only losing one singles match and two doubles matches. Hannah Atkinson ’17 and Julia Cancio ’18 each had a very strong showing in the first round of singles play, defeating their opponents 6-1, 6-0. Atkinson had a tough time in her second round singles match, but still came out with a 7-6 (3), 6-2 victory, while Cancio managed a strong 6-1, 6-2 win.
Giulia McDonnell Nieto del Rio ’18 swept both of her opponents 6-0, 6-0 for a decisive victory in both the first and second rounds of singles play. Alex Stone ’16 had an exciting match against her Middlebury opponent, winning the first game, losing the second in a tiebreak, and then winning the tiebreak for a final score of 7-5, 6-7 (5), 10-5. Tri-captain Maria Pylypiv ’15 fought hard against a tough player from Vassar and pulled off a 7-5, 7-5 victory in first round singles then handily won her second round match 6-1, 6-2. Linda Shin ’17 was consistently strong in both rounds of singles play, wining her first match 6-3, 6-1 and her second match 6-1, 6-4.
Tri-captain Rebecca Curran ’15 played well, winning 6-3, 6-3 in the first round of singles and 6-1, 6-1 in the second round. In doubles, the team of Cancio and Juli Raventos ’18 defeated a pair from Middlebury 8-6. Atkinson and Shin had a tough doubles match and, though they fought hard, ended up losing 9-8 (10). Stone and Pylypiv combined for an 8-4 victory over a team from Vassar while Curran and Maria Gancayco ’18 lost 6-8 to a pair from Bowdoin. In the last doubles match of the day, McDonnell Nieto del Rio and Annika Trapness ’17 won 8-5 playing against a team from Middlebury.
The second day of the tournament produced similarly impressive results, with the women only losing one singles match and two doubles matches. Atkinson and Shin won their first doubles match of the day 8-1 and their second match 8-5. Cancio and Raventos had another successful day, defeating their first opponents 8-1 and their second opponents 8-4. Gancayco and Curran defeated one team from Skidmore 8-3 and a Bowdoin team 8-5. Gancayco also had a strong showing in singles play, winning a tough match 5-7, 7-4 (10-4). Curran crushed her opponent 6-0, 6-0 while Atkinson had to fight to achieve a 7-6, 6-4 (7-4) victory.
“[Gancayco] was the last match on court on Sunday, and found herself down a set, and down for most of the second set. But she turned it around to win the second set 7-5 and then decisively won her 10-point tiebreaker. It was a very impressive performance, especially from a freshman,” Pylypiv said. “I think most importantly, this weekend showed us that we can outlast any opponent, because we are more willing to stay out on the court for as long as it takes to win. The tennis might not be pretty, but we will try our hardest to get in a groove, and if we can’t, we will use plan B or C or D to find a way to win. With this kind of determination, our team has a lot of potential this fall to do whatever we set our minds to.”
The women have this upcoming weekend off but are still working hard to prepare for the ITA Regional Championships, which Williams will host from Sept. 26 to 28.