Williams wins NCAA Regional Final against Tufts to advance to NCAA Quarterfinals

Williams wins NCAA Regional Final against Tufts to advance to NCAA Quarterfinals


Ephs advance to NCAA Quarterfinals with 6-0 win over Tufts

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WILLIAMSTOWN, MA — The NCAA Division III women's tennis Regional Final between the Ephs of Williams College and the Jumbos of Tufts University was held outdoors at the Terrence M. Hunt '44 Tennis Facility on the campus of Williams College on a beautiful, sunny Sunday afternoon. The Jumbos were playing their third match in as many days, after having played a grueling five-hour match against Skidmore on Saturday, while the Ephs were much more rested, having only been on the court for an hour and a half for their lone match of the weekend before Sunday. The hosts emerged victorious by the margin of 6-0 to continue their quest for a seventh straight NCAA Division III National Championship and to extend their unbeaten streak in the NCAA tournament to 32 straight matches.

The Ephs nearly replicated their doubles performance from their second-round match against Ithaca, as they swept the Jumbos on all three doubles courts with relative ease. The Eph duo of senior Kathleen Elkins and junior Maria Pylypiv failed to drop a game at two-doubles on their way to an 8-0 rout of Jumbo freshman Jacqueline Baum and senior Shelci Bowman. Next off the court, playing at the number one position, was the Eph pairing of senior Kara Shoemaker and juniorRebecca Curran, as they dismissed the Jumbo combination of freshman Alexa Meltzer and senior Samantha Gann with an 8-1 scoreline. At three-doubles, the freshman Jumbo tandem of Conner Calabro and Chelsea Hayashi put a fight against the Eph freshmen team of Linda Shin and Hannah Atkinson after finding themselves facing a large deficit early on, but Shin and Atkinson proved to be too much for Calabro and Hayashi as they managed to eventually close out the match 8-3.

The Jumbos did their best to rally against the dominant Eph performance in singles and did a good job, but the Ephs once again proved to be too much for the Jumbos. Pylypiv carried her momentum from doubles to record a commanding 6-1, 6-1 win over Bowman at four-singles, bringing the Ephs to within a point of clinching a spot in the quarterfinals. It was a neck-and-neck race to see who would claim the match-clinching point, and the two senior co-captains for the Ephs managed to close out their matches almost simultaneously. Shoemaker overcame a slow start at one-singles to eventually down Gann in straight sets 6-2, 6-1, mere seconds before Elkins finished off Calabro 6-1, 6-1 to give the Ephs the 6-0 victory.

After the match, Eph head coach Alison Swain emphasized how her team could not take anything for granted in the NCAA tournament: "We're just so thrilled to be moving on and to be taking these girls to California because you can't take any round for granted in the NCAA Tournament. Tufts played tough at the end and made us really work for it, and that's good experience for us. We have a lot to do this week in terms of finishing classes and getting ready for the final 8, but it's a really exciting time." 

Coach Swain also talked about how tournament experience will play a role in the matches to come: "Experience is something that we always hold in our back pocket because I think there are a lot of good teams out there, and we are the underdog in some of the match-ups that could happen. There are things we definitely can improve upon before we play our next match against Bowdoin on Monday, but experience will be something that help us with that because Bowdoin is a team that knows how to compete. We respect that, and we've played them twice already. They played us tougher the second time, and I expect that this time as well. They believe that they can beat us, so we have to bring our best competitive mindset to go out and win.


Williams 6, Tufts 0

  1.  Shoemaker, Kara (WILLIAMS) def. Gann, Samantha (TUFTS) 6-2, 6-1
  2.  Shin, Linda (WILLIAMS) v. Meltzer, Alexa (TUFTS) 3-6, 4-0 DNF
  3. Elkins, Kathleen (WILLIAMS) def. Calabro, Conner (TUFTS) 6-1, 6-1
  4. Pylypiv, Maria (WILLIAMS) def. Bowman, Shelci (TUFTS) 6-1, 6-1
  5. Curran, Rebecca (WILLIAMS) v. Baum, Jacqueline (TUFTS) 6-2, 3-0 DNF
  6. Pastor, Monica (WILLIAMS) v. Kimmel, Rebecca (TUFTS) 6-2, 4-1 DNF
  1. Shoemaker, Kara/Curran, Rebecca (WILLIAMS) def. Bowman, Shelci/Baum, Jacqueline (TUFTS) 8-1
  2. Pylypiv, Maria/Elkins, Kathleen (WILLIAMS) def. Meltzer, Alexa/Gann, Samantha (TUFTS) 8-0
  3. Shin, Linda/Atkinson, Hannah (WILLIAMS) def. Calabro, Conner/Hayashi, Chelsea (TUFTS) 8-3 

Match Notes:
Williams 21-2
Tufts 11-10
Order of Finish: Doubles (2, 1, 3); Singles (4, 1, 3)

Ephs open up title defense by sweeping Ithaca 5-0 to earn spot in NCAA Regional Finals

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WILLIAMSTOWN, MA — The skies cleared up after some early morning showers so that the afternoon match of the second round of the NCAA tournament regional between the hosts, Williams College, and Ithaca College could be played outdoors on the campus of Williams College at the Terrance M. Hunt '44 Tennis Facility. The six-time reigning NCAA champions opened yet another title-defense campaign with a comfortable 5-0 victory over the Bombers, proving without a doubt that their quest for a seventh title in-a-row will be a legitimate one.

The Ephs took all three doubles points with relative ease, as they only dropped one game on their way to a 3-0 lead. The Eph freshman duo of Linda Shin and Hannah Atkinson were first off the court at three-doubles as they breezed past the Bomber junior pairing of Allison Vizgaitis and Kelly Fishback 8-0. The other two courts finished shortly after the first match did, as Eph senior Kara Shoemaker and junior Rebecca Curran eased past the Bomber pairing of graduate Cristina Nunez and junior Alyssa Steinweis 8-1, before the Eph tandem of senior Kathleen Elkins and junior Maria Pylypiv dismissed Bomber junior Carly Siegel and freshman Haley Kusak 8-0.

It was more of the same from the Ephs in the singles portion, as the Ephs only needed two more points to clinch the match. The Ephs proved to be too much for the Bombers, as they squashed any hope of a comeback by taking five- and six-singles by the score of 6-0, 6-0 with Curran and Eph junior Monica Pastor defeating Steinweis and Fishback respectively, claiming the other spot in tomorrow's NCAA Regional Final for the Ephs.

After the match, Eph head coach Alison Swain looked forward to Sunday's Regional Final against the Jumbos of Tufts College: "We played very well today, and now we have to get ready for tomorrow. Tufts will be ready to play tomorrow. Even though we beat them 9-0 in the regular season, everything is different in the NCAA tournament, so we will have to be ready for a tough match." 

Sunday afternoon's NCAA Regional Final is set to kick off at 1 PM EDT, where the hosts will face off against fellow NESCAC team Tufts to see who will advance to the NCAA Quarterfinals.


Williams 5, Ithaca 0

  1.  Shoemaker, Kara (WILLIAMS) v. Nunez, Cristina (ITHACA) 6-1, 0-0 DNF
  2.  Shin, Linda (WILLIAMS) v. Kusak, Haley (ITHACA) 6-3, 1-0 DNF
  3. Elkins, Kathleen (WILLIAMS) v. Siegel, Carly (ITHACA) 6-1, 3-0 DNF
  4. Pylypiv, Maria (WILLIAMS) v. Vizgaitis, Allison (ITHACA) 6-0, 3-0 DNF
  5. Curran, Rebecca (WILLIAMS) def. Steinweis, Alyssa (ITHACA) 6-0, 6-0
  6. Pastor, Monica (WILLIAMS) def. Fishback, Kelly (ITHACA) 6-0, 6-0
  1. Shoemaker, Kara/Curran, Rebecca (WILLIAMS) def. Nunez, Crisitina/Steinweis, Alyssa (ITHACA) 8-1
  2. Elkins, Kathleen/Pylypiv, Maria (WILLIAMS) def. Kusak, Haley/Siegel, Carly (ITHACA) 8-0
  3. Shin, Linda/Atkinson, Hannah (WILLIAMS) def. Vizgaitis, Allison/Fishback, Kelly (ITHACA) 8-0 

Match Notes:
Williams 19-2
Ithaca 14-6
Order of Finish: Doubles (3, 1, 2); Singles (6, 5)

Tufts wins 5-3 thriller against Skidmore to progress to NCAA Regional Finals

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA — The second round of the Division III NCAA women's tennis tournament was held on the campus of Williams College on Saturday. Due to early-morning showers, the first match of the day between Tufts University and Skidmore College was moved indoors to the Lansing-Chapman Rink. The Jumbos were trying to extend their stay in their 14th straight NCAA tournament appearance, and in spite of going down 2-1 after an intense doubles portion, they were able to overcome the Thoroughbreds in the singles portion, taking the match 5-3 and claiming the first spot in the Regional Finals.

The Thoroughbreds managed to come out on top at the end of the doubles portion after three grueling matches. They managed to snag the first point of the match at two-doubles, as the Thoroughbred pairing of Rachel Plevinsky and Zoe Valella were able to gain a break-advantage late in the match against the Jumbo tandem of Samantha Gann and Alexa Meltzer, and then they consolidated it to close the match out by the margin of 8-5. Both matches on the other two courts went deep into their pro-sets, but the Jumbos were able to equalize the match at 1-1, after the Jumbo combination of Shelci Bowman and Jacqueline Baum did just enough to edge out the Thoroughbred duo of Lee Ford and Madeline Benn at the number one position. The match-advantage going into singles came down to three-doubles, as the two teams exchanged blows all the way to the 8-all tiebreaker, where the Thoroughbred combo of Melissa Hirsch and Yumi Karlshoej were able to outlast the Jumbo pair of Conner Calabro and Chelsea Hayashi 7-4.

The Jumbos were not demoralized by their tough tiebreaker loss in doubles, however, as they came out in singles and won the first three matches off the court. First, Callabro leveled the match at two points apiece, as she she dropped only four games at the number three position on her way to a comfortable 6-2, 6-2 victory over Benn. Shortly after drawing level, the Jumbos took the lead through Meltzer, as she staved off Hirsch in a long first set that she took 6-4, before cruising to a smooth 6-0 second set. The Jumbos found themselves needing only one more point to clinch the match just minutes later when Bowman shut down Valella in both sets, putting in a clinical performance to take the match 6-4, 6-3.

With their lead having vanished, the Thoroughbreds found themselves with their backs against the wall. Ford was able to keep the Thoroughbreds in the match, as she stayed mentally tough to take down Gann in three sets 6-3, 3-6, 6-2. It turned out, however, that the Thoroughbreds were only delaying the inevitable as the Jumbos' Rebecca Kimmel dismissed the Thoroughbreds' Robyn Baird in straight sets 6-0, 6-1 to clinch the match for the Jumbos.

With the win, the Jumbos book their spot in the NCAA Regional Finals, which is set to start tomorrow at 1 PM EDT. The Jumbos play the winner of the match between the hosts, Williams College, and Ithaca College.


Tufts 5, Skidmore 3

  1.  Ford, Lee (SKIDMORE) def. Gann, Samantha (TUFTS) 6-3, 2-6, 6-3
  2.  Meltzer, Alexa (TUFTS) def. Hirsch, Melissa (SKIDMORE) 6-4, 6-0
  3. Calabro, Conner (TUFTS) def. Benn, Madeline (SKIDMORE) 6-2, 6-2
  4. Bowman, Shelci (TUFTS) def. Valella, Zoe (SKIDMORE) 6-4, 6-3
  5. Baum, Jacqueline (TUFTS) v. Plevinsky, Rachel (SKIDMORE) 7-5, 1-1 DNF
  6. Kimmel, Rebecca (TUFTS) def. Baird, Robyn (SKIDMORE) 6-0, 6-1
  1. Bowman, Shelci/Baum, Jacqueline (TUFTS) def. Ford, Lee/Benn, Madeline (SKIDMORE) 9-7
  2. Plevinsky, Rachel/Valella, Zoe (SKIDMORE) def. Gann, Samantha/Meltzer, Alexa (TUFTS) 8-5
  3. Hirsch, Melissa/Karlshoej, Yumi (SKIDMORE) def. Calabro, Conner/Hayashi, Chelsea (TUFTS) 9-8(4) 

Match Notes:
Skidmore 17-3
Tufts 10-9
Order of Finish: Doubles (2, 1, 3); Singles (3, 2, 4, 1, 6)


Ithaca dismisses Staten Island 5-0 in Division III NCAA First Round

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WILLIAMSTOWN, MA — The second matchup of the first round of the NCAA women's tennis tournament between Ithaca College and the College of Staten Island was held outdoors at the Torrence M. Hunt '44 Tennis Facility on the campus of Williams College with the previously forecasted rain holding off long enough for the match to be played to completion. It was the Dolphins' first NCAA tournament appearance, but the Bombers denied them their first NCAA tournament win, sweeping them 5-0.

The Bombers raced out to a strong start by notching all three doubles points. The Bomber duo of Cristina Nunez and Alyssa Steinweis were first off the courts at one-doubles, as they eased past the Dolphin team of Sabrina Bragerton-Nasert and Nozima Toshpulatova 8-2, before courts three and two followed in quick succession, as the other two pairs of Bombers posted the same scoreline in their respective wins.

It was more of the same in the singles portion, as the Bombers got out off to quick starts, leaving the Dolphins with little opportunity to recover and keep the score close. With their 3-0 lead in hand, the Bombers found their remaining two points from Nunez and Haley Kusak at one- and two-singles respectively. Nunez blanked Bragerton-Nasert to pull the Bombers within one point of clinching their place in the second round, and then Kusak only dropped two games to Toshpulatova, clinching the match 6-2, 6-0. 

The Bombers book their place in the second round, which will be held tomorrow on the campus of Williams College, where they play the hosts, who are the six-time defending NCAA champions. The match is set to start at 2 PM EDT.


Ithaca College 5, Staten Island 0

  1.  Nunez, Cristina (ITHACA) def. Bragerton-Nasert, Sabrina (CSI) 6-0, 6-0
  2.  Kusak, Haley (ITHACA) def. Toshpulatova, Nozima (CSI) 6-2, 6-0
  3. Carly Siegel (ITHACA) v. Baak, Jean (CSI) 6-2, 2-1 DNF
  4. Vizgaitis, Alison (ITHACA) v. Mulla, Madiha (CSI) 6-0, 5-2 DNF
  5. Steinweis, Alyssa (ITHACA) v. Kushnir, Michelle (CSI) 6-0, 5-0 DNF
  6. Fishback, Kelly (ITHACA) v. Jamaleddine, Jacqueline (CSI) 6-4, 2-0 DNF 
  1. Nunez, Cristina/Steinweis, Alyssa (ITHACA) def. Bragerton-Nasert, Sabrina/Toshpulatova, Nozima (CSI) 8-2
  2. Kusak, Haley/Siegel, Carly (ITHACA) def. Baak, Jean/Madiha, Mulla (CSI) 8-2
  3. Vizgaitis, Allison/Fishback, Kelly (ITHACA) def. Kushnir, Michelle/Jamaleddine, Jacqueline (CSI) 8-2 

Match Notes:
Ithaca 14-6
Staten Island 17-4
Order of Finish: Doubles (1, 3, 2); Singles (1, 2)


Tufts Defeats Scranton 5-0 in NCAA First Round Match in NCAA Division III Tournament

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WILIAMSTOWN, MA – Despite a weather forecast that stated rain was imminent, the NCAA Tournament First Round match between Tufts University the University of Scranton was played outdoors on the campus of Williams College.

Tufts opened the match by capturing all three doubles matches, winning at two and three by the score of 8-0 and completing the sweep with an 8-4 win at number one.

Tufts' number one tandem of Shelci Bowman and Jacqueline Baum broke open a match tied at four with Scranton's Stephanie Bocuzzi and Nicole Mahaffey by winning the last four games to secure the doubles sweep and putting the Jumbos into singles play with a 3-0 lead. 

Tufts increased their lead to 4-0 when Samantha Gann won in straight sets over Stephanie Bocuzzi, 6-0, 6-0.

The fifth and decisive point for Tufts came from number two singles player Alexa Meltzer won in straight sets, 6-1, 6-2 over Devon Cohen.

With the win Tufts improved to 10-9 on the year and 15-13 all-time in the NCAA Tournament in 14 appearances. Scranton finished the year at 11-7 and all-time in the NCAA Tournament the Royals are 1-3 in three appearances.

Tufts advances to a Second Round match versus the Skidmore College Thoroughbreds (17-3) tomorrow at 11:00 AM that will also be played at Williams.

    Tufts University    University of Scranton     
  5   0    
#1 SINGLES   1     2     3   Notes
Stephanie Boccuzzi, University of Scranton 0 0 Order of finish: 1
Samantha Gann, Tufts University 6 6
#2 SINGLES   1     2     3   Notes
Devon Cohen, University of Scranton 1 2 Order of finish: 2
Alexa Meltzer, Tufts University 6 6
#3 SINGLES   1     2     3   Notes
Emily Walsh, University of Scranton 6
Conner Calabro, Tufts University 4
#4 SINGLES   1     2     3   Notes
Megan Azzalina, University of Scranton 6 5
Shelci Bowman, Tufts University 2 3
#5 SINGLES   1     2     3   Notes
Nicole Mahaffey, University of Scranton 1 0
Jacqueline Baum, Tufts University 6 5
#6 SINGLES   1     2     3   Notes
Lisa-Marie Lanciotti, University of Scranton 2 2
Rebecca Kimmel, Tufts University 6 5


#1 DOUBLES   1     2     3   Notes
Stephanie Boccuzzi/Nicole Mahaffey, University of Scranton 4 Order of finish: 3
Shelci Bowman/Jacqueline Baum, Tufts University 8
#2 DOUBLES   1     2     3   Notes
Devon Cohen/Emily Walsh, University of Scranton 0 Order of finish: 2
Samantha Gann/Alexa Meltzer, Tufts University 8
#3 DOUBLES   1     2     3   Notes
Megan Azzalina/Lisa-Marie Lanciotti, University of Scranton 0 Order of finish: 1
Conner Calabro/Chelsea Hayashi, Tufts University 8



Match Notes
Tufts University 10-9
University of Scranton 11-7

Generated on 5/9/2014



21st Consecutive Tournament Appearance for the Ephs

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA – The NCAA Division III Women's Tennis Committee has selected the 50 teams that will compete in the 2014 NCAA Division III Women's Tennis Championships.

The teams will play a single-elimination tournament with the first, second and third rounds played at regional sites, May 9-11.

Claremont McKenna-Harvey Mudd-Scripps Colleges will host the team championship finals, which will be held May 19-21 at Biszantz Family Tennis Center in Claremont, California.

Student-athletes selected to the individual championships will be announced on May 7.

The championships provide for a 50-team tournament. Automatic qualification (AQ) is granted to 39 conference champions, which form "Pool A." Two teams are selected from true independents and schools from conferences that do not have an automatic bid for their champions (Pool B). The remaining nine teams are selected from those teams in conferences with automatic bids that did not win their conference's AQ and the remaining Pool B institutions (Pool C). The teams are geographically paired, whenever possible.

Alison Swain's Williams College women's tennis team is currently 19-2 and most recently finished second in the NESCAC Tournament to archrival Amherst.

Since the 1993-94 academic year when NESCAC first permitted NCAA team play in the NCAA tennis post-season tournament the Williams women have qualified every year. The Ephs will be making their 21st consecutive appearance in the NCAA Tournament.

Swain, in her seventh year as the Ephs' head coach, has directed Williams to an NCAA Division III record six consecutive NCAA titles. Overall Williams leads NCAA Division III in most titles won with eight. Swain has been a part of the seven of those titles; one as a player and six as the coach.

Williams is 63-13 (.829) in the NCAA Tournament. The Ephs' 63 all-time wins is also an NCAA Division III record. The Ephs have eight first place finishes, two second place finishes, two third place finishes and one fourth place finish in 20 years.

"Hosting the NCAA Regional Rounds is a privilege for us," said Swain. "Every team that has made the NCAA tournament has played strong tennis all year. We want to provide all the teams in our regional the best possible experience from a facilities, support, and competitive standpoint. On the flip side, we love to compete on our home courts with a home crowd. It's also the end of classes and the start of final exams, so from a strictly academic standpoint, hosting is also an advantage for our student-athletes and their efforts to balance both athletics and tennis."

"Our team's level of play this past few weeks has been strong. However, it is essential that we continue to focus on improving this week and preparing for a tough weekend of NCAA competition. From here on out, it's single elimination, so we will focus on each individual match and celebrating our time on court competing together."
The Ephs will host first, second and third round play in the 50-team field beginning on Friday.

In the regional hosted by Williams both Williams College and Skidmore College have received first round byes.

On Friday Tufts University (9-9) will play Scranton University (11-6) at 11:00 AM and Ithaca College (13-6) will play the College of Staten Island (17-3).

The winner of Tufts/Scranton match will face Skidmore (17-3) at 11:00 AM on Saturday and host Williams will play the winner of Ithaca/Staten Island match at 2:00 PM.

Saturday's winners will play for the regional title on Sunday at 1:00 PM and the right to advance to the National Quarterfinals Claremont, California.

Play outdoors will be held at the Torrence M. Hunt Tournament Courts
and play indoors will be held in Lansing Chapman Rink.

Tournament Schedule

May 9th

11:00am -- Tufts v. Scranton

2:00pm -- Ithaca v. Staten Island

May 10th

11:00am -- Skidmore v. Winner Tufts/Scranton

2:00pm -- Williams v. Winner Ithaca/Staten Island

May 11th

1:00pm – Saturday's Winners

Ephs sweep Maroons 9-0
March 27, 2014 Ephs sweep Maroons 9-0
Women's Tennis Tops Wesleyan
September 21, 2013 Women's Tennis Tops Wesleyan
A Summer at "The Hall"
August 29, 2013 A Summer at "The Hall"