The Dartmouth women's tennis team wrapped up their fall season, hosting the Big Green Invitational Oct. 29-31 at the Alexi Boss Tennis Center. Despite several setbacks in the main draw, Jamie Caplan '09 turned in an impressive final-round performance in the B flight, while the rest of the team had a strong showing in the consolation brackets.
Caplan easily dispatched Erin Fleming of the University of Rhode Island, 6-3, 6-1, in opening round play before encountering much stiffer challenges later in the bracket. Caplan survived three consecutive third set super tie breaks to climb up the ladder and earn a spot in the finals of the flight.
In the second round, she defeated Boston University's Danielle Abraham 6-3, 2-6, 10-8, and then moved on with victories over Ashley Harvey of University of Long Island, 6-2, 2-6, 10-7, and Sandy Wijeratne of Stony Brook University in the semifinals, 4-6, 7-5, 10-7.
However, she met a different fate in the finals, where a late surge was not enough to stop Long Island's Jessica Loose from taking the B flight crown with a score of 6-3, 7-5.
In the other flights, Stephanie Schnitter of Harvard claimed the A flight singles crown, while Ohio State's Angela DiPastina and Sonia Ruzaimovski garnered the double title.
"It felt pretty good. It was by far my best tournament this year," said Caplan on her success. "I haven't been paying quite as well as I had hoped, and this was a great way to end the season."
"I'm really proud of the way Jamie competed," assistant coach Jayme Ahmed '05 said. "All three of her matches were really tight."
Senior captain Katie Jaxheimer '06 added to the praise. "Jamie competed extremely well this weekend, and stayed mentally tough through all of her super tie-breakers. That format is tough to play since any stray mistakes can hurt you, but Jamie stayed aggressive and was able to hit forceful shots in pressure situations."
The rest of the Big Green supplemented Caplan's performance with a strong effort in the rest of the field. After losing in her first round match, Catja Carell '08 attempted to run the table in B flight consolation play, but was defeated by Liyand Wang of Cornell in the finals.
In the A flight series, Jaxheimer and co-captain Ann Scott '06 both fell in the opening round, but continued to battle in the consolation bracket. Jaxheimer fell to DiPastina, the eventual back draw champion, in the second round, while Scott made it all the way to the semifinals, where she was knocked out of the competition by Harvard's Cindy Chu.
Danielle Murray '09 rounded out Dartmouth's singles entries, posting a win in the B flight against Courtney Ulrich of Southern Mississippi before falling to Catriona Stewart of Harvard in the round of 16.
In doubles action, the senior tandem of Jaxheimer and Scott fell to a pair from Rutgers after winning their opening round match against a duo from SUNY-Buffalo. The other two doubles teams, Caplan-Jen Murray '09 and Carrell-Danielle Murray, both dropped their opening round tilts.
Although on paper the Big Green's performance may not seem remarkable, the team is not disappointed by their effort. "Because this was our first home match of the season, everyone was very excited to step out on the court and it translated into a high energy level for each match," according to Jaxheimer. "Our doubles has improved tremendously since the beginning of the season, and, in general, our team did a great job of closing out some tight matches.
Caplan added, "I think overall our team had a really good weekend." She said that although it may seem like a lackluster performance on the team's part, "there were a lot of really good matches."
The women's tennis team will try to channel this optimism into success on the court when they open their spring season at home against Army January 20. "We had a successful fall season, but the spring season is very fun since our dual matches," said Jaxheimer. "We have a very cohesive group, and our teamwork will certainly serve us well." Ahmed echoed this prediction, saying, "The team has improved so much, I'm very excited to go into the winter."