Florida road trip garners mixed results for Lions

The women’s tennis team’s Spring Break journey to the Sunshine State started off gloomy after a pair of losses, but an 8-1 trouncing of St. Mary’s College helped the Lions salvage the Orlando trip as they continue to gear up for May’s National Championships.

Not wanting to let losing become a familiar trend, the Lions came out with a mission to win the March 12 contest. That mission was accomplished, as the victory lifted the Lions to a 9-2 mark on the year. Junior captain Jackie Shtemberg and freshman Felice Trinh bounced back strongly after the Lions’ two-game skid with an 8-1 doubles win. Freshman Christie Pollin and partner junior co-captain Tamra Wroblesky also recorded an 8-1 doubles victory. Senior tandem Haley Kutner and Lindsay Katzel added the third doubles point with their 8-2 victory.

Shtemberg also won her singles match in straight sets 6-0, 6-3, as the Lions claimed all but one of their singles matches on the afternoon. The Lions’ only singles loss came from Stefanie Haar who fell to St. Mary’s Camille Gebert 6-1, 6-4. With strong performances this year, both Katzel and Kutner are 12-4 on the year and 10-1 in dual action.

The Lions hit a wall against Division-II Flagler College on March 10, losing their first match of the season 6-3. Shtemberg bested Flagler’s Chelsi de Cuba 6-2 in a match between both team’s top singles players, but de Cuba retired with the second set knotted at 5-5. Shtemberg and Trinh won in doubles’ action again by a score of 9-7. The victory brought the pair off to a quick 4-0 start this year. Unfortunately, the Lions went winless in singles play. Junior Haar lost a rough match 6-0, 6-1. Kutner put up the best fight, despite losing to Flagler’s Chelsea Taylor 6-1, 6-7, (11-9, tiebreaker). Trinh, Katzel and Pollin all were beaten.

The combination of Haar and Kutner were victorious as they defeated Jennifer Saviano and Deon Miller 9-7. Teammates Pollin and Wroblesky lost 8-6.

The loss hit the team hard and they looked to rebound strongly against the next day’s opponent Coe University. Despite a better effort, the squad dropped its second straight decision.

Losses came in singles’ matches for Shtemberg, Haar, Trinh and Pollin. For Shtemberg it was her first loss of the season. If that wasn’t bad enough, she and teammate Trinh also lost their first doubles match of the year by a score of 8-2. Bright spots did come from the day as Kutner won her singles match 6-1, 6-3.

Before their trip to Florida, the Lions toppled the Ithaca College Bombers in a March 6 tune-up match. The College was absolutely dominant in singles competition with the exception of Haar’s back- and-forth loss to Ithaca’s Agata Kubik 2-6, 6-4, 10-8. Shtemberg played well to give herself an effortless victory against Devra Reiman 6-0, 6-1. And if that wasn’t impressive enough, teammate Pollin did that much better by shutting out her opponent Alyssa Jaffe 6-0, 6-0. The College’s Wroblesky and Kutner both won their singles matches easily.

The powerful tandem of Shtemberg and Trihn gave the College a victory over Ithaca’s Natalie Jenereski and Kubik 8-2. The Lions’ Haar and Kutner also defeated their opposition of Melanie Cohen and Melissa Nunez by a score of 8-3. Wroblesky and Pollin won their match by way of a shutout defeating Ithaca’s Reiman and Jaffe 8-0.

The Lions will have some time to regroup and rest before they host William Smith College on March 28 at 10 a.m.