Contrafatto headed to nationals

Sophomore Christina Contrafatto swept all competition at this weekend’s Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Northeast Regional Championships, improving her record to 13-0 in singles play this fall.

She was named All-American after beating freshman Chelsea Rauck from William Smith College in an intense match that tested each player’s endurance.

Contrafatto surrendered the first set 6-2, then took over the second, defeating Rauck 7-6 after winning the tiebreaker 7-4. Contrafatto then crushed Rauck in the third, 6-1.

“It’s a lot of pressure actually, because it wasn’t an easy tournament and there are always freshmen coming in and surprising everyone – like the girl I played in the finals,” Contrafatto said. “It just says to me I still need to improve on my strengths and weaknesses even though I won.”

Contrafatto now advances to the ITA National Championships in Fort Myers, Fla.

“I’ve got nothing to lose,” Contrafatto said. “Win or lose, I still get three matches and no matter what, out of eight girls, I will still be eighth in the country.”

“Christina deserves to be an All-American,” head coach Scott Dicheck said. “There will be tough competition in the Championships and it could go either way.”

Three other Lions participated in the Regional Tournament. Senior captain Jackie Gavornik fell in the opening round of singles play, but advanced to the second round in the doubles tournament with partner Contrafatto.

Junior Kristen Turturiello went 3-1 in the first round of the singles tournament, splitting her two matches on the second day to fall in the tournament.

Freshman Haley Kutner captured her first two matches in the tournament, but lost her third match to drop out of the regionals.

The College also faced Richard Stockton College last Wednesday, which was predicted to be their closest match of the season.

The Lions manhandled the Ospreys 9-0, stretching their streak to 110 straight New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) wins.

In first doubles, Contrafatto and Gavornik defeated junior Kristin Tukel and freshman Christa Phillips 8-5. Junior Ayumi Yamazaki and Kutner beat junior Kelly Chin and junior Caitlin McMahon 8-5 in second doubles. In third doubles, junior Karen Shih and Turturiello trounced senior Dina DiMauro and sophomore Jessica Victor 8-2.

In singles play, Contrafatto overcame Tukel 6-2, 4-6, 6-3 in the top of the singles ladder. Turturiello beat Chin 6-0, 6-0 in second singles. In third singles, Yamazaki topped Phillips 6-0, 6-1.

Fourth singles had freshman Lindsay Katzel defeating McMahon 6-4, 6-1. In fifth singles, Gavornik won 6-2, 6-4 over freshman Shelly Sai. Gavornik was also named NJAC women’s tennis player-of-the-week.

Sophomore Ariel Donohue finished singles play, cruising by junior Rashida Crawford 6-0, 6-0 in sixth singles.

With one NJAC match remaining in the fall, the Lions have defeated all other competition 9-0 in each contest. All members of the team stand undefeated in NJAC play in both singles and doubles.

“The whole team is having very good results,” Dicheck said. “Hopefully the entire team can build off of this and Christina’s win for the spring season.”

The Lions will face Kean University this Friday. The ITA National Championships will not begin until Oct. 13.