Tennis tops Gophers, UMass despite doubles losses
The Dartmouth women's tennis team stomped both the University of Massachusetts and the University of Minnesota this weekend at home in the Boss Tennis Center. The Big Green beat both the Minutewomen and the Golden Gophers 4-3.
On Friday, the Big Green women faced off against the Minutewomen and dropped the first two doubles matches in twin 8-5 losses. Dartmouth's Megan Zebroski '08 and Mary Beth Winingham '10 had a tough time with the UMass No. 1 pair, as did the No. 2 doubles team Kerry Snow '07 and Lindsay Winingham '07.
Natalie O'Rourke '08 and partner Jesse Adler '10 picked up the sole doubles win over UMass in a clean 8-0 win.
After the slow start, Dartmouth quickly rallied back in the singles matches. The younger of the two Wininghams defeated Masha Pozar at the No. 2 spot in two games, 6-3, 6-2. Co-captain Kerry Snow, along with freshmen phenoms Adler and Carley Markovitz '10 made short work of their opponents, giving the Big Green a 4-3 win.
On Saturday, the Big Green women returned to the courts to face the Golden Gophers of Minnesota.
In what seemed to be a trend this weekend, Dartmouth got off on the wrong foot and dropped its doubles matches, three in a row.
"We've been having some trouble with our doubles game, but we didn't let that get to us. Our coach just told us, 'We're down 1-0 but let's go out and win these next matches,'" said Snow.
No. 2 player Mary Beth Winingham put up the first point for the Big Green in her singles match against Lindsay Risebrough, followed by Snow's win at the No. 4 spot, helping the Big Green to tie the overall score at 2-2. Later in the day, No. 6 player Jamie Caplan '09 swept her opponent and tied up the overall score yet again at 3-3, leaving the tiebreaker to freshman Adler.
In the last match of the day, Adler had the full support of the Dartmouth crowd.
The freshman played aggressively and kept the pressure on her opponent until she broke, succumbing to defeat in three sets, 1-6, 6-0, 7-6.
Co-captain Lindsay Winingham was thrilled.
"It was a huge win for us," she said. "Beating the No. 61 ranked team in the nation is a real confidence-booster going into the spring Ivy league season."
The two wins over UMass and Minnesota were personal victories as well, since last year Dartmouth gave in 3-4 to both teams. In 2006 at Minnesota, the Big Green was tied up at 3-3 in a similar match-up but dropped the final match as the result of injury.
Snow remembers the event clearly.
"It was difficult to go home thinking 'What if?' you know? But this year it was just amazing to get that back."
Lindsay Winingham attributed the win to her team's spirit.
"What made a difference was playing at home. We have a team of 14 girls, and only eight can travel. It was a huge difference having a teammate stand behind you at the fence encouraging you to keep fighting," she said.
The Dartmouth women's tennis team will head down to Florida on March 17 for the annual spring training trip where they will practice and compete against several Florida teams in preparation for the Ivy league season.
The team's first match will be against Florida Atlantic in Boca Raton at 1 p.m. on Saturday, March 17. Once the women return from their training trip down south, they will be back in action at Boston University on March 31 at noon before diving into Ivy League competition.