Women’s tennis advances to Elite Eight

Linda Shin ’17 conifdently won all four of the matches in which she competed this past weekend.
Linda Shin ’17 confidently won all four of the matches in which she competed this past weekend.

Women’s tennis (22-0) advanced to the NCAA Div. III Elite Eight last weekend, overcoming Endicott 5-0 on Saturday and Skidmore 5-0 on Sunday. Williams played with confidence in doubles on Saturday. The Ephs’ tri-captain Rebecca Curran ’15 and Maya Hart ’16 finished first, topping Endicott’s Brittany Potter and Jamie Zompa, 8-0. Williams’ No. 2 doubles pairing of Linda Shin ’17 and Juli Raventos ’18 followed with another win at 8-1, while Endicott’s Egbert and Heacox battled at No. 1, but ultimately were downed 8-4 by tri-captain Maria Pylypiv ’15 and Julia Cancio ’18, giving Williams the lead at 3-0 heading into singles. Pylypiv got it started for the Ephs in singles, taking her opponent Amy Heacox 6-0, 6-0. With a 4-0 lead, Williams’ Shin was in position to seal the victory. Shin found success against Endicott’s Kenzie Rhodes, taking the match at 6-0, 6-0 and giving Williams the win at 5-0. On Sunday the Ephs defeated the Thoroughbreds again without dropping a match.

First off the court was the No. 1 Williams pairing of Pylypiv and Cancio, who authored an 8-1 win over the Skidmore team of Zoe Valella and Yumi Karlshoej. The No. 2 Eph tandem of Raventos and Shin recorded their own 8-1 victory in downing Brianna Greene and Caroline Finnegan. The closest of the three doubles matches came at No. 3, where Curran and Hart outlasted the Thoroughbreds’ duo of Michelle Fuca and Erica Meno, 8-5. Needing just two singles wins to close out the match with five points, the Ephs got quick results from No. 1 Pylypiv and No. 3 Shin. Pylypiv won in straight sets over Zoe Valella, 6-1, 6-0 and Shin also posted a straight-set win by topping Brianna Greene 6-2, 6-0. With the win today, the Ephs improve to 22-0 on the year and extend their overall win streak to 23. They also claimed their third win over Skidmore in NCAA tourney play. “This is always the most exciting time of the year,” tri-captain Monica Pastor ’15 said. “And even though Regionals never prove to be the most challenging part of NCAAs for us, we still embraced and celebrated every moment this weekend. The team is thrilled to be in Ohio next Monday and thankfully we have an entire week to practice before then. Lots to work on and even more to look forward to!” Williams is making its 22nd-consecutive appearance in the NCAA Div. III Tournament and the Ephs sport an all-time record of 69-14 This will be the eighth-consecutive NCAA Quarterfinal appearance for Williams under eight-year head coach Alison Swain ’01. The Ephs won the NCAA title in Swain’s first six years and fashioned an NCAA Div. III tournament record win streak of 33 before finishing third last year.

The six-straight titles ties Williams with Stanford for most consecutive title won in NCAA women’s tennis. Overall Williams leads NCAA Div. III women’s tennis with 69 wins and eight NCAA titles. The 2015 NCAA Quarterfinals, Semifinals, and Championship Match will be held on May 18-20th at the Linder Family Tennis Center in Mason, Ohio, a neutral site for the Championship. The Ephs leave for this next step in their season on Saturday. The women will face DePauw University in the Quarterfinal Round on May 18th. The women saw DePauw earlier this season on their spring break trip. The Ephs emerged victorious in this previous match-up, coming away with an 8-0 win. As the season concludes, the women will say goodbye to Pylypiv, Curran and Pastor.

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