Women’s Tennis Defeats BatesBy Caroline Tien
Barely three weeks into the spring season, the MIT women’s Varsity Tennis team has shown that countless drills, practice sets, and conditioning do pay off. The team returned from their match against Bates this past weekend with an 8-1 victory under their belt.
Despite a new lineup and new doubles partners, the day started off with intensity and focus, as MIT demolished their opponents in all the doubles matches. On the first court, the duo of Caroline Tien ’04 and Jen A. Hipp ’04 rallied past their opponents to win 8-5. On the court over, Joanna L. MacKay ’07 and Elaine Ni ’06 stepped up and easily won 8-2. With a combination of hard hit serves and well placed volleys, the match quickly went in their favor.
In third doubles, Jacklyn Cichon ’05 and Ruby J. Pai ’04 also took advantage of their finely honed volleys to win 8-5. The tandem of Alexis R. Desieno ’05 and Sarah E. Nelson ’06 showed the opposing team who were the better players by winning 8-3 and likewise, Alex E. Coso ’07 and MacKay emerged victorious at 8-2.
MIT stayed fueled by their momentum moving into singles. On the first court, Tien won the first set 6-2. After a temporary lapse of focus at the start of the second set, she stepped up to win six straight games for a 6-4 win in the second set. A court over, Hipp tore through her opponent 6-3, 6-4 by using well-placed passing shots and relentless groundstrokes. In third singles, Cichon garnered a very physically taxing 7-5, 4-6, 6-4 win. The match came down a mere handful of points.
Despite well-executed points, Pai faced a hard-hitting opponent and lost 6-2, 6-2. A court over, Ni didn’t sweat a drop as she pummeled the other player 6-3, 6-1. Likewise, Emily Chen ’07 refused to let up on her opponent, winning 6-4, 6-0.
Overall, the team is younger this year, but they’ve already shown that they are capable of facing and defeating formidable opponents. “I really like how this team is coming together,” remarked MIT coach Carol Matsuzaki. “I am really proud of the way we competed, especially in doubles!”
In two weeks, the team will travel to Los Angeles to play CalTech and California Lutheran University. Until then, they can only prepare with more drills, more running, and more matches.