Tennis Keeps Cruising Through Early Schedule
By Matt Fernald '13, Sports Section Editor
Both the men’s and women’s tennis teams put their skills on display over the past week as the men won matches against Brandeis and Babson, 6-3 and 6-1 respectively, while the women notched three strong wins over Connecticut and Wellesley Colleges and as Brandeis University.


The women officially opened spring NESCAC play on March 28 with a 9-0 sweep of their opponents. They banished any nerves early in doubles, as the teams of Jennifer Ouyang ’10 and Caroline Richman ’13, Charlotte Wilinsky ’12 and Jen Kim ’10, and Priyanka Kumar ’13 and Ashley McCall ’12 won the three doubles matches, losing only five games between them.

“Even though it was cold and windy, our doubles team started the match off right — winning quickly and decisively. Singles was more work for us but, with the support of each other, all of us were able to pull out our matches,” said J. Kim.

The effort and support were crucial: three first-years placed in the top six that day, as Richman, Kumar and Sarah Nyirjesy played at spots one, four and six. All six singles matches went smoothly, with only one set dropped.

This past Saturday, the women traveled to the Wellesley Invitational to play a pair of matches against the home team and visiting Brandeis University. As has become the norm this season, each member of the team performed brilliantly. The team’s lone loss against Wellesley came in the first doubles match, as the team of Brittany Berckes ’10 and Laura Danzig ’12 fell 8-5. However, the Jeffs rebounded with ease, winning the remaining two doubles matches, 8-1 and 8-0, and all six singles matches, losing an average of just 2.5 games per set.

“I think that the team was really supportive of each other,” said Kumar. “We cheered for our teammates down to the last singles match. We treated each one as important as the next even when we had technically already won.”

In the second match of the day against Brandeis, the success continued with another big win for the women. Berckes and Danzig made up for their loss earlier in a dominant 8-0 win, followed by two more doubles wins: 8-1 and 8-2.

In singles, the Jeffs got to work taking down the Owls. Although Carlissa King ’11 fell in an extremely tight match at the number two spot, the team won all the other matches handily: Danzig won in the number one position, 6-2, 6-4, Natasha Brown won her match 6-2, 6-0, Laken King ’11 won 6-0, 6-1, Wilinsky won 6-0, 6-0, and Richman won 6-1, 6-0. The women so far are matching the expectations that come with being the top-ranked team in Division III. They have yet to lose this spring.


The men’s day began against Brandeis, and they came out on top, 6-3. After Austin Chafetz ’12 and Robby Sorrel ’12 lost a tight match in number one doubles, 8-6, it was time for the rest of the team to focus and come back. This it did almost to perfection, as the pairings of Moritz Koenig ’11 and Mark Kahan ’13, and Sean Doerfler ’11 and Wes Waterman ’12 each won their doubles matches, 8-2.

The singles matches saw more tough play from the Jeffs. Although Chafetz and Surain Asokaraj ’12 fell at the numbers one and six slots, slots two through five won to secure the win, with Waterman winning in three sets and Doerfler coming through in dramatic come-from-behind style. It was a good benchmark for the Jeffs.

“Brandeis has a good team, top to bottom, and there is a fair chance we could see them again in the conference tournament,” said D. Kim. “Going into the weekend with Bates and Bowdoin, we continue to work hard and prepare to bring a lot of energy against what will be two tough teams. Hopefully we come out on the right end of things.”

Later that same day against Babson College, the men were still on top of their game. The three doubles teams swept through their matches easily, 8-4, 8-2 and 8-3, allowing Coach Chris Garner to give his top few guys a rest. Kim played number one and recorded a solid win: 7-6(4), 6-3. At number two, Asokaraj avenged his earlier loss and was never under any pressure, as he won 6-1, 6-1. Senior Alex Kaufman fell 3-6, 6-2 and 10-8 at number three, but Amherst had already clinched the win by then, winning all three doubles matches and the top two singles matches.

Players four through six rounded out Amherst’s productive day in great style, as Scott London ’10, Tony Sheng ’11 and Dan Gonzalez ’10 each won their match comfortably in straight sets. The men and women are both collecting momentum as they move into the latter halves of their seasons.

Issue 21, Submitted 2010-04-07 03:11:35