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Back-to-back Victories for Tennis

Women’s Tennis Defeats Both Wesleyan and Vassar by One Match

By Nisha Singh

team co-captain

The women’s tennis team faced two non-conference opponents this weekend. The team defeated Wesleyan at home 5-4 on Friday. The following day, they beat Vassar College in another close 5-4 win.

Weslayan match competition

In doubles play against Wesleyan, the top two doubles were extremely competitive. First doubles co-captain Mealani Nakamura ’00 and Kelly Koskelin ’02 toughed out an 8-6 win, while Julie Koo ’03 and Jess Hall ’02 fought back from a 5-2 defecit, reeling off 6 straight games for an 8-5 victory. Third doubles, Tara Rao ’02 and Nisha Singh ’00 played well, but lost 8-3 due to a slow start.

In singles play, the top two players both had close first sets, but once they claimed them, their games picked up, and they cruised for the rest of the match. Nakamura won 7-5, 6-2 at first singles, and Koskelin won 6-4, 6-2 at second singles. Koo finished off her opponent very efficiently, garnering a 6-1, 6-1 victory. The fourth, fifth, and sixth singles matches didn’t go as well for MIT. Hall lost 6-2, 6-0, Rao lost 6-2, 6-3 and Singh lost 6-1, 6-1.

At seventh singles, Ayako Tanaka ’00 had the longest match of the day. After losing the first set 6-4, she won the second 6-3. A tie-breaker was determined the outcome of the match, which Tanaka lost, but only after having played for two hours.

Vassar match competition

Against Vassar, MIT performed well overall in doubles. Nakamura and Koskelin had another close match, winning 8-6. Koo and Hall executed to perfection at second doubles, cruising by a score of 8-1. Rao and Singh lost 8-2 at third doubles, though they played some good points. Tanaka and Yi-Ning Cheng ’02, playing in their first match together, won 8-4 at fourth doubles.

Nakamura had an interesting match at first singles. She fought her opponent off in the first set, winning it 7-5, and then showed no signs of mercy in the second, blanking her opponent 6-0. Koskelin’s match at second singles proved the crucial fifth point that MIT needed for the victory. After losing the first set 7-5, Koskelin gathered herself together, winning 12 of the last 15 games for a decisive 6-2, 6-1 win. Koo simply blew her opponent off the court, dropping only one game in a 6-0, 6-1 romp. Hall faced a difficult match at fourth singles, losing 6-2, 6-1. Rao had an exciting three setter at fifth singles. After winning the first set, she lost the second 6-2, and the final set 6-3. Singh lost 6-4, 6-1 at sixth singles despite jumping out to a 4-2 lead. Tanaka lost by the same score at seventh singles. Lastly, Cheng pulled out a satisfying 6-2, 7-5 win at eighth singles.

Head coach Carol Matsuzaki had the following to say about the two matches, “We did not play our best tennis, which gives us some things to work on at practices before we travel to Vermont for the Middlebury Tournament.”