Women’s Tennis Dominates Caltech On Spring Break Trip to California

The women’s tennis team traveled to Pasadena, CA over spring break last week for the opportunity to train, bond, and compete. On Monday, they faced rival Caltech, whom they dominated, 9-0.

In doubles, Mariah N. Hoover ’08 and Leslie A. Hansen ’10 won 8-2, Elizabeth A. Denys ’11 and Anisa K. McCree ’10 won 8-1, and Karina N. Pikhart ’09 and Melissa A. Diskin ’11 won by default.

In singles, Diskin played the number one slot and won 6-0, 6-1, while Yi Wang ’09 won her match 6-1, 6-0. Pikhart pulled out an exciting three set match 4-6, 6-3, 10-5. Jenny C. Dohlman ’11 and Sheena Bhalla ’11 breezed through their matches with wins of 6-1, 6-1 and 6-2, 6-1 respectively. Kerry R. Weinberg ’10 won her match by default.

Later that week, the team played the Middlebury College Panthers of Vermont, who were also training in California. MIT suffered a tough 8-1 loss, with Hansen earning the only MIT victory at one singles with a score of 6-3, 6-4.

In doubles, the Engineers lost in a few close matches. Both Hoover/Hansen and McCree/Wang lost their matches 8-6. Pikhart/Diskin lost their math 8-2, while Dohlman/Weinberg lost 8-0.

In singles, Hoover lost another close match of 6-4, 6-3, Diskin was beaten 6-1, 6-3, and Wang lost a hard fought match 6-0, 6-2. McCree fell in her match 6-1, 6-1, and Pikhart lost 6-1, 6-0. In exhibition matches, Jennifer A. Rees ’11, Katherine M. Smyth ’10, and Sonya Makhni ’11 lost their matches 8-1, 8-0, and 8-5 respectively.

Upon returning to Cambridge, MIT competed in their first home match of the spring season last Friday, battling against Bowdoin College. Ranked 22th in the nation, Bowdoin defeated 20th ranked MIT, 7-2.

The match started off with the doubles matches as usual. Hoover and Hansen won their match, 8-3, but both the two and three ranked doubles teams, McCree/Wang and Pikhart/Diskin, were defeated in hard fought matches 8-3, 8-3.

With Bowdoin up 2-1 heading into the singles matches, the pressure was on the Engineers. Hansen gave her all in her match, running every ball down, and her hard work paid off. She won the grueling three set match 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.

Hoover lost a tough match 6-3, 6-1 at two singles, even after adjusting her strategy mid-match by taking balls out of the air at net. Although she lost the match, the team now has a drill named after her to work on taking volleys out of the air, due to how effective it was during the match.

Diskin lost her match 6-3, 6-4 but fought all the way, going into near-splits at times to run down shots. Wang lost her singles match as well in a tough three setter 6-3, 4-6, 6-1. In a close straight set match, McCree barely lost 7-5, 6-1. Pikhart lost her match 6-1, 6-3.

In the end, head coach Carol Matzusaki wanted to name a Most Valuable Player, but “there were just too many to name just one.”

The team’s next match will be Saturday at home, when it faces Trinity College.