The Maroon tennis teams turned in strong performances this weekend, extending their respective winning streaks to three matches apiece. The women beat Wash U 8–1 in Belleville on Saturday, while the men defeated Kalamazoo 6–3 on Sunday in Hyde Park.
The women are now 3–0 on the season and have won 13 dual matches in a row since last season. They are currently ranked fourth in the nation and easily disposed of the 16th-ranked Bears.
“[Beating Wash U] is always a pretty solid win for us,” said second-year Linden Li, who ran her doubles winning streak with third-year Carmen Vaca Guzman to five matches. “Coach Perry reminded us of how we work as a team: Taking every match seriously no matter who is on the other side of the court and putting 100 percent behind every stroke. That really is the marginal difference between winning and losing.”
The women’s sweep of Wash U in doubles included an 8–1 victory by third-year Kendra Higgins and fourth-year Chrissy Hu. The pairing improved to 11–0 on the season. Higgins and Hu each defeated their singles opponents as well. They will square off against Kalamazoo in Hyde Park this Sunday, looking to extend their winning streak to four matches.
The men’s team split six singles matches but swept their doubles matches, ensuring victory. Suprisingly, this was the first match each doubles team had played together.
“With a whole new doubles lineup, we were able to shock them because they were not expecting a change,” third-year Jan Stefanski said. Stefanski, alongside first-year Zsolt Szabo, defeated Kalamazoo’s number one pairing 8–1. “Zsolt and I dominated with our big serves. [Third-year] Troy [Brinker] and [first-year] Neil [Karandikar] used their spectacular volley skills to dominate their team. [First-year] Krishna [Ravella] and [fourth-year] Will [Zhang] used their consistency to out grind their competition. After sweeping the doubles we were very confident going into singles. We performed well enough to get the win.”
First-year Alex Golovin was one of the three players who won his match, helping to secure the victory for Chicago. “We’ve been working hard this year and clearly, it paid off,” said Golovin, the lone first-year to win a singles’ match. “This was a match we felt we could win and it happened for us.”
“We felt pretty good about the match and felt we deserved to win and we did,” echoed Stefanski.
The women’s team will square off against Kalamazoo in Hyde Park this Sunday, February 27 at 3 p.m.
The men, winners of six of their last seven matches, will try to extend their streak of victories to four against Gustavus Adolphus College in Wisconsin on Saturday, February 26 at 12:30 p.m.