Women’s Tennis Team Beats Nichols
A 5-4 road victory over Nichols College is one thing; doing it with six out of nine players never having played a college varsity match is another. Yet this is exactly what the women’s tennis team accomplished in its season opener on Sunday, Sept. 9 thanks to a true team effort.
“Because most of the members of the fall season team are newcomers and four of our strongest players are abroad, yesterday’s win meant a lot,” Lauren Jacobs ’15 said.
Jacobs won her singles match at #3 and also triumphed in her doubles encounter with partner Madison Hartley ’15. Success in the doubles turned out to be the key, with all three Wesleyan pairings finding a way past their Nichols counterparts.
Special credit must go to the tandem of Genevieve Aniello ’13 and Maddie James ’16 for the resolve they showed in fighting back to take their match 8-6. With a solid 3-0 advantage built in the doubles, the stage was set for Jacobs and Jessica Seidman ’16 to wrap up victory with convincing wins in their matches. Jacobs took her match 6-0, 6-4, while Seidman’s opponent at #4 was forced to retire after suffering a 6-0 drubbing in the first set. Defeat for the remaining players in their singles matches therefore had no bearing on the outcome of the match.
“It’s definitely nice to get a season-starting win under our belts,” head coach Michael Fried said, adding that the result was particularly gratifying given the relative inexperience of the squad.
“With practice and more matches, we are very excited to see our team continue to improve through the fall and into the spring when we have our most competitive NESCAC matches scheduled,” Jacobs said.
One doesn’t doubt that this excitement is genuine, given the abundant potential of the team. Yet great potential often doesn’t manifest itself in immediate success, which is why victory against Nichols tastes even sweeter.
Looking ahead, the first home encounter of the season for women’s tennis is on Friday, Sept. 14 against Babson College. As the match is also the last head-to-head match-up on the fall season calendar, both Fried and assistant coach Robert Troyer are aware of how vital it is that the team comes out on top. Momentum is crucial in any sport, and a win against Babson would undoubtedly keep a spring in the step of the Cards.
Recent results indicate that Friday may be a slightly tougher encounter, as Babson defeated Nichols 7-2 earlier this fall. Yet the Cardinals have significant advantages that should not be overlooked. For one thing, they hold a 3-1 edge in their all-time head to head. Perhaps more importantly, they possess an invaluable surprise factor. Add this to the talent and determination that was on display against Nichols, and it would appear that this team is an unstoppable force.