28
Mar
09

brandeis slides past women’s team

After a tough, but solid win by the men’s team, it was time for the women to take to the slick Brandeis courts. The women had seen how fast the ball was coming off the courts during the men’s match, but it is different playing and having to make adjustments. It took a few games for the #1 doubles team of Alex and Caryn to adjust, as they got down a break early. They did a great job of fighting back and trying to find a rhythm, but after getting the score to 5-5 their opponents picked up the level of play and were able to capture the match. At #3 doubles, Meg and fellow freshman Elizabeth had great energy in their first match playing together. Many of the games were close, but the young women couldn’t find a way to get the big points to go their way against their more seasoned opponents. As both #1 and #3 doubles were finishing, Erika and Brooke were locked in a battled at #2 doubles. Both the Bates and Brandeis women played at a high level and refused to even give an inch as they entered into a tiebreak. Erika and Brooke got up early 3-1, but then the Brandeis women came storming back. After holding off one match point, Brandies won the tiebreak 7-4 to take a 3-0 match lead.

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As singles started, like usual Caryn was playing one of the top women from the region. It was obvious her opponent felt more comfortable on her home courts, as almost every rally ended with a winner by one of the women. At #2 singles, Alex was playing a tough opponent in Gabrielle Helfgott, but hit great shots in key moments to win the first set 6-4. In the second, like most strong players, Gabrielle picked up her play and forced it to a deciding third set match tiebreak. In tiebreakers like this it is all about finding a way to win, and competing harder than your opponent. This was something we talked about as a team all week, competing to the max on every ball. Alex exemplified exactly what we had been working on. She did whatever it took to get one more ball back in play, and won 10-4 in the third. She showed great leadership to the young women on this team by the way she competed and continued to keep her composure in a pressure situation.

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Even though losses are never fun, as long as we learn from them they can be beneficial. We played great against Middlebury, but couldn’t find a way to win a match. Once again, the ladies played extremely hard, and this time we got at least one victory. It may not seem like much, but it shows we are making positive steps. The Cats hoped to continue taking steps forward on Thursday against Bowdoin in Merrill Gym at Bates. 

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