Junior Joanna Toke and the women?s tennis team have a lot to smile about after last week-end?s Intercollegiate Tennis Association Regional Championships.

Three women represented UR during the tournament that took place at William Smith College ? two came away with titles.

Toke, who earned a second place finish at the National Collegiate Athletic Assocation Championships last spring, was seeded 1st in this tournament.

Throughout her half of the draw, Toke showed signs of incredible ease, beating all of her opponents in straight sets.

Prior to the Championship match for the top half of the draw, Toke dropped a total of only five games in eight sets.

The only sign of struggle Toke showed was during her match against Katie Silky of Nazareth College.

Showing slight signs of fatigue, Toke pulled off with a 6-0 final set, after losing a tough 0-6 second set to Silky.

Teammate senior Deepa Popuri joined Toke in the singles tournament. Popuri, seeded third in the tournament, was playing smoothly until her match against Diana Bellettieri of New York University.

Bellettieri eventually dropped to Popuri in three sets ? 6-7, 7-5, 6-1 ? but signs of fatigue began to show in UR?s second-seeded player.

Popuri headed into semi-finals of the top draw with Silky and dropped the match to her in straight sets, 6-4, 7-6.

The championship featured Toke and second-seeded Lauren Stelleto of Union College. Despite the rankings, Stelleto was no match for Toke.

After an easy two sets, Toke won the singles title with a score of 6-1, 6-1.

But Toke?s winning stroke was not finished. She later paired up with senior Rachel Sandler in the doubles draw.

The duo, seeded No. 1 in the tournament, played with relative ease. The women grabbed the crown from Hamilton College?s Ana Venturas and Lauren Schantz, 8-4.

Toke was the first UR athlete since Jill Mazza in 1998 who helped UR to a win in both the singles and doubles in the ITA tournament. In addition, the pair also qualified for the ITA Nationals in Texas in late October.

?Coming from a 32-team draw, and qualifying for nationals, they really did great,? head coach Anna Khvalina said. ?They handled the pressure very well and we are all looking forward to the rest of the fall.?

Wu can be reached at jwu@campustimes.org.



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