Men’s winning streak comes to an end, women lose to Tufts

Lions pick up win over Skidmore. (Tom O’Dell / Photo Editor)

The men’s tennis team’s five-game winning streak came to an end on Thursday to Haverford College in a close 5-4 loss. The now 5-1 Lions only managed one of three doubles wins, as junior Stewart Fernandez and freshman Howard Telson defeated junior Will Garrett and senior Hailiu Yang 8-3.

The Lions other three victories came from juniors Steven Fernandez and Dan Lee, as well as sophomore TJ Riley in singles action. Fernandez defeated Yang 6-1, 6-3. Riley was dominat in is match, only allowing Garrett two points in his 6-1, 6-1 victory.

Lee took down sophomore Jacob Weisental 6-3, 6-1 in sixth singles. Junior Jon Yu won his first singles match 6-4, but Andy Dougherty rallied to defeat him 7-5, 6-0.

Sunday proved to be even tougher for the Lions, as they lost their second match of the week to Swathmore College at home 7-2.

Senior Jeremy Eckhardt had an impressive performance in the match, winning both his singles and doubles matches with partner Riley.

The duo narrowly defeated Zak Kelm and Stephen Youngblood 9-8 (6-0) before Eckhardt went on to win in singles over Youngblood 6-3, 6-2.

The women’s team also suffered a loss this Sunday to Tufts University, but won a close 5-4 contest over Skidmore College the day before.

Sophomores Karisse Bendijo and Allison Tierney walked away with wins in both doubles and singles play against Skidmore. Together, the pair took down Rachel Loeb and Nataly Mendoza 8-5. Bendijo would go on to defeat Loeb once more 6-0, 6-2 while Tierney rallied from a 6-4 loss to defeat Mendoza 6-1, 7-6 (7-1).

“Our strength lies in our communication,” Bendijo said. “Allie and I work so well together because we pump each other up to win. I’m proud to have her as my doubles partner.”

Also winning in doubles was the junior tandem of Felice Trinh and Emily Petersack. They held on to defeat Meliisa Hirsch and Molly Nolan 8-6.

TJ Riley waits to receive the serve. (Krystal Spencer / Staff Photographer)

The decisive win of the day went to sophomore Lauren Balsamo, who held on to beat Sophia Bryan-Ajania 6-2, 6-7(5-7), 6-4.

The tables were turned against Tufts, with the Lions ending up on the losing side of a 5-0 decision.

The College got swept in doubles play, losing all three of their matches to the Jumbos.

Once Lauren Hollender and Samantha Gunn defeated Balsamo and Peterseck respectively, the remaining matches were called off and left undecided.

“(Sunday’s) loss was tough,” Balsamo said. “Obviously Tufts is a really good team. They’re ranked top five in the nation and the outside conditions made it hard too. But (Saturday’s) win against Skidmore was really important because it secures our spot for nationals in May.”

The men’s team continues their season at home against Drew University today, while the women’s team will visit Swathmore College on Sunday.