Women’s Tennis Caps Successful Season at NCAA East Regionals
First Tournament Play Since 92-93 SeasonBy Nisha Singh
Eight teams were invited to the 2000 NCAA East Regional tournament where MIT earned the sixth seed.
They faced a tough third seed Trinity College in the first round. The team trailed 2-1 after doubles, but not after co-captain Mealani Nakamura ’00 and Kelly Koskelin ’02 won their first doubles match 9-7, after trailing 7-5 and saving three match points. There were several close matches in singles, with Nakamura ’00 pulling out a three-setter at first singles, and Jess Hall ’02 narrowly losing in three sets at fourth singles. However, Trinity walked away with the 6-3 win over the beavers.
The team was done for the season, but individual players were still competing for the NCAA Championships. Nakamura qualified in singles, and also Nakamura and Koskelin qualified for doubles, both for the second year in a row. Nakamura won her first round match vs. a Pomona-Pitzer single in three sets. She lost her second round match to Amherst, the third seed and eventual champion. In doubles, Nakamura and Koskelin lost to unseeded Pomona-Pitzer in the first round, who defeated the rest of their opponents and claimed the championship.
Most successful squad in years
The tournament appearance wrapped up the team’s most successful season in recent history. Building on top of their 11-1 record from the fall, undefeated in NEWMAC regular season and NEWMAC 1999 champions, they posted a 4-1 record in the spring, with some wins against some highly ranked Division III opponents such as Skidmore, Wesleyan, and Vassar.
MIT qualified for NCAA play for the first time since the 92-93 team. With a young team, only three seniors will be missed (Nakamura, Ayako Tanaka ’00 and Singh ’00).