Archive for April, 2012


Wellesley Tournament Day 3

After losing to the #19 Brandeis Judges 6-3, the Bobcats got a second chance only 10 days later on the Brandeis courts. At #1 doubles Meg and Ellie got some vengeance on Carley Cooke and Faith Broderick, beating one of the best teams in the region 8-6. The pair really committed to closing tight and being aggressive with their movement. At #2 Nicole and Ashley also won an 8-6 match, fighting back after an early break to give the bobcats their second point. At #3 Brandeis won 8-4 as Jacqui and Lucy fought hard, but were unable to lob as well as they usually do in the windy conditions.

Brandeis evened the score at 2-2 after winning at #2 singles, but Erika gave the lead back to the Bobcats winning 6-2 6-3 by ripping the ball and looking for her chances to move forward. She stayed focused and never let up as the captain lead  by example putting the Bobcats up 3-2. At #1 Ellie beat Carley Cooke 6-3 6-4 after losing in 3 sets in their first match up. With both players crushing the ball, Ellie was able to take the match by being more patient than her opponent and choosing safer targets in the windy conditions.

Unfortunately that was the last match the bobcats would win. Brandeis took the last 3 matches, 6-4 7-6 at #3, 6-2 7-6 at #5, and 6-1 1-6 6-4 at #6 for the team win. Though we lost the match 5-4, we couldn’t have been more proud of how we fought. Brandeis beat us 6-3 only a few days prior, and we were only a few points away from beating them this time. We improved drastically between our first and second match, and the girls did everything we talk about everyday: fight as hard as you can, on every ball, for each other.


Wellesley Tournament Day 2

After a tough match against Wellesley the women were ready for another battle with MIT. Play started with doubles and Jacqui and Lucy wasted no time putting the Bobcats on the board in their 8-0 match. The pair played flawlessly, scrapping for every ball and moving well off each others shots. MIT evened the score at 1-1 with an 8-3 win at #2 doubles. At #1 Ellie and Meg got down a quick break before bouncing back. They committed to closing the net tighter and being more aggressive with their crosses. It worked, and the pair won 6 of the next 7 games for a 8-4 win and 2-1 Bobcat lead heading into singles.

At #5 and #6, Lucy and Ashley jumped their opponents from the beginning. They played long directional points to generate short balls and then attacked the net. They never took any points off and refused to let up, both taking their match 6-0 6-1 to put the Bobcats up 4-1.

Down 4-1 with the remaining 4 matches all in long battles, MIT started making a comeback. At #2 Meg won the first set 6-4, but her opponent got hot and had taken the second set 6-1. Jacqui had dropped a long first set 6-3 and was in a battle for the second set. Erika dropped the first set 6-2 but won the second 6-2. Ellie did the same, losing the first set 6-2 then winning the second 6-2. 

MIT took #2,3,4 all in 2 and 1/2 hour matches to even the score at 4-4 with the deciding match at #1 singles still being played. Down 4-5, first year Ellie Mandzhukova was taking on experienced senior Anastasia Visunevetsky in a battle for the ages. Tt the 4-5 changeover Ellie committed to playing her game and have the match played on her terms. She chose to strike the ball big and safe, moving the best she could, and looking to play offensively and get to the net. She worked as hard as she could on every ball and was rewarded, winning the next 3 games for the set 7-5 and sealing the team win 5-4.

Overall it was a great team match that could have gone either way. We fought our hardest and came out on top today. Tomorrow’s Easter match would be another chance for the Bobcats to take on the #19 Brandeis Judges. 


Wellesley Tournament Match 1

The Bobcats went to Wellesley over Easter weekend to play in the 8 team NorEastern Bowl in which we played 1 team match each day against some of the best teams in the country. The first of such matches featured #18 Wellesley against the #30 Bobcats. 

It would be safe to say we came out a little bit flat. Wellesley was ready from the start and jumped out to an early lead at all 3 spots. At #3 Jacqui and Lucy made the quickest recovery after being down 2-0 as they broke right back to get on serve. After that break they got on a roll, with Jacqui hitting great lobs to set Lucy up for the put away volley. They executed their game plan brilliantly and rolled to an 8-3 win over a very tough team.

At #1 and #2 the Bobcats were in some big holes. After starting slow we were fighting our way back in but were down 7-4 and both spots. At #2 Nicole and Ashley won 2 games to tighten the game 7-6 but Wellesley served out a big game to even up the team match 1-1.

At #1 Meg and Ellie were clutch. They both ripped returns through the middle and closed off the net aggressively. They won 3 straight games to tie the match at 7-7s before both teams held and pushed the match to a tie-breaker. Both teams had chances, but on their second match point Ellie cranked a ball through the middle to set Meg up to cross and knock off the volley for a 9-8(9-7) win and a 2-1 lead for the Bobcats heading into singles.

At #1 Ellie played senior Marie Watanabe, one of the best players in the country who had already beaten Ellie handily in the fall. But Ellie didn’t let past results get in her way. The momentum from doubles had given her all the confidence she needed and she ripped the ball directionally and found ways to attack, mixing in a short chip with her drive to come forward. She kept Watanabe off balance and stayed in the right mode the entire match. 6-4 6-2 Ellie, 3-1 Bobcats. 

At #3 and #4 Wellesley fought back and was able to win two tough matches to make the score 3-3, with both teams needing 2 of the last 3 matches for the win. At #6 Ashley was in a battle. Both Ashley and her opponent were human ball machines. They refused to miss as they ripped the ball at each other with nearly every game going to deuce. After a little more than an hour they were knotted at 6-6 and a tie-breaker ensued. Ashley rose to the occasion and was tougher than her opponent, running down every ball in the 7-1 breaker. In the second set Ashley got an early break and never gave one back, and she gutted out another long set for the 7-6(7-1) 6-4 win.

At #5 Lucy played shot maker Sojung Lee. After a tough first set Lucy had battled back in the second set and found her way to net point after point to take the second set 6-4 and push a third set. But Sojung’s shot making ability was too much and she ripped winner after winner and kept Lucy off the net to win the third set. 

At #2 Meg lost a long first set to Erica Choo and was in a hole 3-0 in the second set. But the senior found a way to fight and scrap for her team and did her best on every ball. She was able to get to the net and made a tremendous comeback to force a second set tie-breaker which she gutted out 7-5. In the third set both players dug in and played great tennis, but Meg got edged out 6-4 in the deciding set.

Overall we were so proud of how everyone fought today. We never put our heads down and we played some really great matches. Unfortunately it is not always going to work out on the scoreboard, but if we keep playing with this intensity, good things are going to happen.


Women vs Wesleyan

After a tough match against Brandeis the Bobcats came out fired up against the Cardinals. The matches were close across the board, but the Cats came out on top 8-6 at the top two doubles spots. At #3 Kristen and Erika dropped a heart breaker 9-8 in what was literally a two hour doubles match.

The Bobcats carried over that fire into singles. At #2 Meg Anderson lead the charge, coming back from 5-2 in the first set to win the set in a tie-breaker. Down 4-1 in the second set, Meg stayed gritty and stuck to her game plan to win 5 straight games and the match 7-6(4) 6-4.

At #3 Jacqui played former #1 Genevieve Aniello. They played a long first set with Aniello attacking and coming forward while Jacqui countered by ripping passing shots and top spin lobs to win the set 7-5. In the second set Jacqui got an early break and then brought her serve to close out her match 7-5 6-3.

Having played a 2 hour doubles match, Erika decided to go for the record today by also playing a 3 1/2 hour singles match. She got down big at the start 5-0 before starting her come back. She won the next 4 games before Kiley Robbins served to close out the set 6-4. The second set was the exact opposite with Erika jumping out to a big lead before Kiley started to close the gap. But the Bobcat senior closed it out with a few big serves 7-5 to push a third set. In a replica of the second set, Erika jumped out to a 4-0 lead. But Kylie dug in and ripped her ground strokes and started making a comeback. In the last two games both players had chances, but Erika was the grittier player and she was able to outlast Kylie and make one more ball than her for the 4-6 7-5 7-5 win.

At #5 and #6 Lucy and Ashley took it to their Cardinal opponents, both winning 6-3 6-3. They played similar matches, both using their big ground strokes to get short balls and come forward. It was perhaps the longest team match ever played, (not really, but 6 1/2 hours is a long time) the Bobcats took down the Cardinals 7-2 for their first NESCAC win of the year.


Matches vs Brandeis

The Bobcats had a chance to improve on their #30 ranking and get some revenge when they took on the #19 Brandeis Judges. After losing 8-1 last year the Bobcats were hungry and came out firing in doubles. They were up a break on all three courts before the Judges started their comeback. At #1 Brandeis was down 3-0 then won 8 of the next 9 games for the 1-0 lead. At #2 Nicole and Ashley held on in a close 8-6 match to tie things up 1-1. At #3 Kristen and Erika played a long set but came up just short in the tie-breaker for a 2-1 Brandeis lead heading into singles.

At #4 Erika gutted out a marathon match, 6-2 1-6 7-6 (7-5) for the bobcats first singles point. The other came at #5 from Lucy Brennan in a 6-3 6-2 match were she mixed up her chips and drives to attack the net and keep her opponent off balance. The bobcats had two other close matches at #1 and #6 where we came up just short in 3 sets and the team score was 6-3 for Brandeis. Overall we fought hard and played well, but we didn’t execute when we needed it and Brandeis won most of the close matches. The Bobcats didn’t hang their head and will be ready for another tough match the following day against Wesleyan.

After the women’s match the men’s match commenced. After losing 6-3 last year the Bobcats came out ready to ball. They brought lots of energy in doubles and continued serving big. #1 and #3 finished at the same time both winning their matches 8-2 and 8-3. At #2 Timmy and Pierre won 8-5 and completed the men’s 5th straight doubles sweep.

When many teams would rest, the bobcats were hungry for more. At #1 Timmy won 6-1 7-5 using his serve and forehand to dictate. At #2 Matt played great and never let up on a single point, taking his opponent 6-2 6-3. At #3 Rob dropped 3 games in his 6-3 6-0 win. At #4 Jeff dropped a tough first set before changes his target and winning the second and third set 6-2 6-1. Pierre continued his high level of play and came out on top 6-2 6-3. At #6 Kyle won 6-1 6-2 to complete the 9-0 sweep.

It was a great match for the men. They brought energy on every point and never let up, working as hard as they could on every ball. They stayed in a great mode the entire match and controlled the things they could control.

April 2012


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