Lions look strong in season-opener

It may be six more weeks until spring, but the women’s tennis team opened up the season Saturday in an unscored match against the University of Delaware (UD) in the Lions’ Spring Kickoff Tournament.

The Lions captured three victories in singles and two victories in doubles action. The first doubles team, sophomore Christina Contrafatto and senior Jackie Gavornick, lost to UD sophomores Susan Pollack and Alexa Dragonette 8-2.

“Delaware is an aggressive team,” head coach Scott Dicheck said. “We have to learn to be the aggressor first and try to bring the attack to them.”

Winning for the Lions was the second double team, consisting of junior Kristen Turturiello and freshman Haley Kutner. They defeated UD juniors Liz Perlow and Sari Shuster 8-2.

Continuing the win streak was the third doubles team of junior Karen Shih and sophomore Ann Wright. They defeated UD freshman Abbie Pyeritz and sophomore Julie Schiller 8-6.

In singles action, the Lions went 3-3 with victories from Kutner, Turturiello and freshman Lindsay Katzel. Kutner defeated Perlow 6-3, 6-0. Turturiello captured a win against Shuster 2-6, 6-4, 1-0 (10-4). Katzel was able to seal the deal with a victory against UD freshman Kate Iannelli 6-0, 4-6, 1-0 (10-8).

On Sunday, it was the Lions men’s tennis team’s turn to start the Lions’ Spring Kickoff Tournament against the Blue Hens of UD. Doubles partners senior co-captain Ryan Carty and junior Corey Ball lost to UD senior Jesse Carl and freshman Nolan Greenberg 8-5. Ball and Carty quickly made up the loss with an 8-6 win against UD sophomore Jason Hanschmann and senior Phillip Wayne.

Sophomore Mike Klimchak and freshman Roger Mosteller fought for the win and captured it against Hanschmann and freshman Josh Levine 8-3. “The team has great depth.” Klimchak said. “As long as we play like we know how to we should be fine.”

Klimchak added that he has been working on his serve and hopes to win nationals this year. The Lions came one match short of winning last season. Klimchak’s hard work showed as he defeated Hanschmann 6-2, 6-2 but fell short to senior Adam Liebman 6-3, 6-3.

“When we face a team of this caliber it forces us to really focus,” Dicheck said. “If we keep working hard and improving we should see our ultimate goal.”

In singles action, the Lions continued to stay strong as Ball defeated Wayne 3-6, 7-5, 1-0 (10-7). Carty won both double single matches against Liebman 3-6, 6-3, 1-0 (10-2) and against Hanschmann, 6-1, 6-0.

Senior co-captain Justin Cook defeated Levine 6-4, 6-1.

The Lions official scoring season starts this Saturday at 9:30 a.m. against Washington College at the Student Recreation Center.