WILLIAMSTOWN, MA – Williams College hosted Middlebury, Skidmore, and RPI (Sunday only) in the annual two-day Lindsay Morehouse '00 Invitational. The tournament is named in honor of former Eph tennis captain and standout Lindsay Morehouse '00, one of three Williams alumni/ae who died in New York City in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Morehouse was a teammate of current Eph head coach Alison Swain '01.
This year's Lindsay Morehouse Invitational featured a new, more team-oriented format. The tournament is still based on individual match play and encourages participation to kick off the start of a new season. However, now each school will play their rounds of singles and doubles in the tournament in unison against an opponent so that all players from a school can be competing at the same time on adjacent courts. The tournament should have much more of a collegiate team atmosphere on court with this new format.
As before, while there will be a victor in each match, no tournament champion will be crowned at the end of the weekend. Instead, the Morehouse Invite will continue to highlight every player on a team's roster and celebrate participation at the start of a new season.
On day two of the Morehouse Invite RPI joined the competition to make it a four-team event.
On day one of the Morehouse Invite Williams squared off against Middlebury and Skidmore in matches featuring four doubles encounters and nine singles matches.
The contests are not scored as team matches and rather are a collection of matches that allow the coaches to see how their teams have fared through pre-season training and offer a chance to modify their lineups facing players from other institutions.
|Hannah Atkinson (l.)
& Alison Swain
Lindsay Morehouse Award
Williams College presents the Lindsay Morehouse Award each year at the Lindsay Morehouse Invitational to acknowledge "a senior player who represents the ideals of sportsmanship, friendliness, character, fair play, and hard work that Lindsay represented."
This year's recipient was Williams' senior captain Hannah Atkinson.
In round one versus Middlebury Williams claimed three of the four doubles matches and then won eight of the nine singles contests. Four of the singles matches were decided via the tiebreaker and Williams captured all four of those. Mia Gancayco and Hannah Atkinson battled back from being down a set to claim wins.
Eph head coach Alison Swain was impressed with her team's first competition of the fall on Saturday noting, "Doubles in the morning looked awesome against Middlebury and winning eight of nine singles matches and four via tiebreakers showed we are fighters."
Day two began with Williams and Middlebury mixing together in one lineup to play against the combined team from Skidmore and RPI. The combined team of Williams and Middlebury swept all four doubles and all eight singles encounters.
Following the combined match Williams again faced off against the Panthers from Middlebury in an abbreviated format of four singles matches and four doubles matches. The two teams split the doubles matches with the Ephs prevailing at one and three and Middlebury claiming two and four.
In singles play the Ephs won at one and two, match three was not played, and Middlebury captured the fourth singles match.
Assessing the weekend Swain stated, "Overall I think our doubles stood out in terms of energy and aggressive play. As a base to build off of, we are in a really exciting and confident place with our doubles.
Swain added, "In terms of singles play, every single player on our team had a match that was exciting, close, and hard fought. I think we played seven tiebreakers total in singles on Saturday and won all four of the deciding match breakers we played. I think we are playing the big points well and that will only get better as our season progresses."
The Ephs will next be in action next weekend when they travel to Cambridge, Mass., and the campus of MIT to compete in the New England Regional Intercollegiate Tennis Association Tournament.