Recent tournament shows strength of women’s tennis

Last weekend on April 13 and 14th, Vassar’s Women’s Tennis Team took the Seven Sisters Championship by storm. On April 13, Vassar defeated Bryn Mawr College, 5-0 and Smith College, 5-0. The next day, Vassar defeated Mount Holyoke College, 5-0 and Wellesley College, 4-1.

Despite being short a player, VCWT expected to go out to Seven Sisters, play their hardest and win. They played one match at a time, and as a result, throughout the tournament, the team kept improving. Sophomore Samantha Schapiro commented on how the team approached their matches. “When it was time to take on Wellesley, we were all mentally and physically prepared and our hard work paid off,” she wrote in an emailed statement.

Highlights on April 13 included the tournament against Bryn Mawr, in which Schapiro and fellow sophmore Ava Sadeghi blanked their opponents in two quick sets, winning six games each set compared to Bryn Mawr’s zero in number two and number one singles, respectively. Freshman Winnie Yeates defeated her opponent 6-1 and 6-0 in number three singles. As for doubles, freshman Lauren Stauffer and junior Lindsay Kantor teamed up to defeat their opponents 6-0, 6-0 and freshman Kelsey Van Noy and senior Natalie Santiago won their number two doubles match 6-0, 6-1.

Continuing the tournament on April 14 against Mount Holyoke, Van Noy and sophomore Hannah Van Demark at number two doubles defeated their opponents 6-1, 6-1, while all three singles matches were wins for the Brewers, thanks to the continued efforts of Sadeghi, Santiago and Yeates. Against the tough Wellesley team, the Brewers again swept the singles, with Sadeghi leading the team with a win against number one ranked singles.

In terms of the dynamic of the women’s team, Santiago noted that they are very close. ”Despite having a few players out due to academic conflicts, the team has managed to become stronger and closer than ever, our commitment to the sport and the team have only grown despite the many challenges we have faced this semester,” she explained.

Schapiro agreed, describing the team dynamic. ”We go out on the court and play for each other. When someone is down everyone is cheering for them and stepping up their game. We might be a small team, but we are all extremely close and we are a very hardworking group of girls.”

She expanded on her passion for tennis and for the program here at Vassar. “Every time I step on to the tennis court wearing burgundy and grey and VC on my uniform I feel focused and determined. I am so happy to get the opportunity to play for my school and play the game I learned to love. Although practices can be frustrating and physically demanding, when it is time to play in a match, these girls seize the opportunity to have fun and play from within.”

As for the rest of the season, VCWT hopes to use this momentum to carry them to victory and success during Liberty Leagues Championships. Members on the team have high hopes and expectations for their team and team members, specifically to continue on to Nationals in May. Other team goals of the season include beating Skidmore College by making it to Liberty League finals, and to qualify for the NCAAs.

In regard to this goal, Schapiro acknowledged that it is not a guarantee. ”This is not something we have much control over. All we can do is continue playing great tennis, and winning matches.” In light of winning the Seven Sisters Championship, the team seeks to approach these goals just like how they did with Seven Sisters-one match at a time.

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