UR tennis experienced some turbulent match-ups this past week. The women came out victorious against William Smith College (7-2) and New York University (9-0) but were defeated by Skidmore College (3-6), while the men overpowered Nazareth College (9-0) but fell just short against NYU (4-5).
The Yellowjackets were well-prepared for William Smith on Wednesday, March 28 as the women’s team dominated five of the six singles matches in addition to two of the three doubles matches on their opponent’s home courts.
Junior Frances Tseng and seniors Jamie Bow, Alexandra Goodman and Danielle Shreck all won both their singles and doubles matches. Tseng won 7-6, 6-1 at No. 1, and Goodman won 6-3, 6-2 at No. 2. Shreck, at No. 3, and Bow, at No. 4, fought off tough competitors, edging out a win in the final set of each of their matches 6-2, 3-6, 6-4 and 6-3, 4-6, 6-0, respectively. Freshman Rachel Suresky also won her match at No. 5. Doubles competition had strong showings — Bow and Tseng won 8-4 at No. 1 followed by Goodman and Shreck who crushed their opponents 8-3 at No. 2.
Back on their home turf on Saturday, March 31, women’s tennis only lost 11 points in their match-up against NYU, and they easily secured a victory by preventing their opponent from scoring any points at all.
“I think we had some idea that NYU would be an easier win because of our scores in the past,” Goodman said. “But it is definitely a confidence booster to overpower them as much as we did.”
UR won all three doubles matches 8-1, as well as defeated NYU opponents in all the singles match-ups. Tseng, at No. 1, only played one game before her challenger retired due to an injury. Meanwhile, Goodman, at No. 2, came out on top, 6-0, 6-0, Shreck was a 6-0, 6-2 victor at No. 3, Bow won at No. 4 (6-3, 6-1), Suresky dominated at No. 5 (6-1, 6-1) and freshman Cara Genbauffe topped off the wins 6-0, 6-0 at No. 6.
The women’s final competition of the week did not go as successfully as the team had hoped. However, the seniors put forth great effort during the last home meet of their college tennis careers. Although it was a close game, Skidmore came out on top and returned home in victory on Sunday, April 1.
After Tseng won 6-1, 6-1 at No. 1 and Goodman won 6-3, 6-0 at No. 2, UR was ahead 3-2. The senior doubles pair of Goodman and Shreck also won doubles 8-6 at No. 2 to put up more points for UR.
While Goodman admitted to being a little nervous thinking about it being her last match, she settled in and played to the best of her ability.
“As the matches went on, I became less nervous and more happy about the fact that I have enjoyed playing tennis so much over the last four years and how all the hard training paid off on Senior Day,” Goodman said. “I was especially happy that I would be finishing the season with my doubles partner and good friend Danielle [Shreck] who I have been close with since day one of freshman year.”
However, Shreck, Bow, Suresky and Genbauffe faced tough competition in their singles match-ups and were overpowered, giving Skidmore the lead. Bow almost tied it up by coming back in the second set; however, Skidmore’s Lee Ford proved too strong and won the final set with a tiebreaker. Skidmore’s No. 1 pair of Ford and Mendoza proved too strong for UR’s Tseng and Bow, as the ’Jackets lost 3-8.
While the outcome against Skidmore was not ideal, the women believe this will only help them improve against future competitors.
“This match helped us discover the specific areas in our games that need improvement,” Tseng said.
On the men’s side, UR had complete control over Nazareth on Thursday, March 29 and did not allow them to score any points.
Junior Joel Allen, at No. 4, secured the final point for the 9-0 win with his singles victory of 6-2, 6-2. Senior Brian Rice at No. 2, freshman Julian Danko at No. 5 and senior Matt Volkov at No. 6 all won their singles matches in straight sets, while sophomore Boris Borovcanin, at No. 1, and senior Alex Magill, at No. 3, stayed strong to defeat their opponents in the third and final set.
The Yellowjackets had no difficulty in the doubles competition either, as Borovcanin and Rice won 8-4 at No. 1, Magill paired with Danko for an 8-1 win at No. 2 and Volkov with sophomore John Lewis Etter finished 8-1 at No. 3.
Despite UR domination in doubles, NYU squeaked out an away victory on Saturday, March 31 by winning five of the six singles matches, earning them a one point victory over the Yellowjackets.
After winning the three doubles matches, UR had a 3-0 lead over the Violets. However, that lead was short lived as Borovcanin and Volkov forced their opponents into a third set, but were unable to rally to the finish despite valiant efforts. NYU claimed wins in singles at No. 1-4 and 6.
“We felt good going into the match against NYU,” Magill explained. “We knew that it was going to be close either way, and that getting out to a fast start in doubles would be key. We did a great job sweeping doubles, but unfortunately couldn’t quite keep it up in singles.”
Danko was the only UR player to overpower his NYU opponent in the singles match-ups. Although he wasn’t feeling up to par and lost the first set, he was able to pull through for his team anyway.
“A great pep talk from Coach James McGuire after losing the first set, along with the realization that my victory was completely necessary in order for us to have a chance to win the match, helped me to rally despite my illness to come back to win the next two sets,” Danko said. “This motivation is nothing out of the ordinary for any of my teammates. We all understand the importance of the team, and that there is never an excuse not to give maximum effort.”
Men’s tennis is now 5-9 overall. They are away facing Hobart College on Thursday, April 4 at 4:00 p.m. The women’s tennis team is now 7-3. Their next match is away against St. Lawrence University on Saturday, April 14 at 10 a.m.
Holden is a member of the class of 2013.