Bears rebound with sweep of D-II Southern Indiana
One week after losing all but one game to the University of Chicago, the No. 16 Washington University women’s tennis team bounced back over the weekend with a 9-0 sweep of the University of Southern Indiana, an NCAA Division II team.
“[The win] was a really good confidence booster. I think we needed that,” junior Natalie Tingir said. “It was close with Chicago….We just needed to get over the edge a little bit to beat them…[so] it was good to sweep these guys.”
The Bears opened with strong doubles play against the Screaming Eagles. Freshmen Evelyn Qin and Betsy Edershile claimed an 8-2 victory over Michelle Girgenti and Lindsey White in No. 1 doubles, Tingir and freshman Corinne Rauck were 8-2 winners over Morgan Coquerille and Ellena Stumpf in No. 2 doubles, and senior captain Elise Sambol and freshman Theresa Petraskova teamed up to defeat Alyssa Hoover and Logan Ackerman 8-0 in the No. 3 spot.
“It is nice when you come out of those doubles, when you only really have to focus on getting two of the singles points,” head coach Kelly Stahlhuth said. “In a weird way too, it’s nice to have that lead, [but] you go into singles, [and] you can’t relax.”
In No. 1 singles play, Tingir defeated Girgenti in three sets (6-4, 3-6, 6-0). Tingir explained that one of the biggest challenges of the match was the similar style of both players.
“[Girgenti] was a tough girl. It was kind of freaky because it felt like I was playing myself—she had my exact game,” Tingir said. “I was winning the important points—a lot of the games were going to deuce, and I was winning those games. Staying consistent was one of my things.”
Five other Bears were winners in singles play on Saturday. Qin, Petraskova and Sambol claimed wins at No. 2, No. 3 and No. 4 singles, respectively. Sophomore Paige Madara defeated Ackerman in the No. 5 spot (6-1, 7-5), while fellow sophomore Brittany Trimble took the No. 6 match (6-4, 6-0).
Stahlhuth noted that although the score appeared lopsided, the Bears did meet challenges in singles play.
“I wanted our level to keep rising the whole time…no matter what they bring for us I wanted to keep raising our game—it’s like gears, sometimes you’re in second gear and have to raise it into third,” Stahlhuth said. “I wanted us to react, rather than be influenced by their game.”
After a week of practice, the Bears will look to improve upon their 2-1 record on Saturday against Kalamazoo College
“We’re going to tweak a few technical things that we’ve got to just fix…[In] doubles, I want to keep working on our strategy, high percentage, making sure we’re still working on our net game,” Stahlhuth said. “Just drills where it becomes more automatic—our shots will be there without us really having to focus on them.”