With four freshmen, a sophomore and a senior rounding out the Cardinals' opening-day women's tennis lineup Sat., Sept. 11, Wesleyan captured five of six singles matches and two of three doubles affairs to push past visiting Simmons, 7-2. The squad headed back to the courts in match mode Tues., Sept. 14 to down Springfield, 8-1, a team the Cardinals have defeated in nine of the 11 matches they have played all-time.
The Cardinals boasted three newcomers who posted wins in both singles and doubles play vs. Simmons. At #3 singles, Grace Smith '14 (main photo) overcame a first-set defeat to win the next two by counts of 6-0, 6-2. Both #5 Nicki Softness '14 (photo insert upper right) and #6 Kaitlyn Clark '14 (photo insert lower right) disposed of their rivals in close straight sets. Also winning for Wesleyan in singles were #1 Genevieve Aniello '13 and #2 Kiley Robbins '14. While Robbins and Aniello fell at #1 doubles, the teams of Linda McDougal '11 and Smith at #2 and Softness/Clark at #3 proved victorious.
Against Springfield, it was Aniello (#1), Robbins (#2), McDougal (#3) and Softness (#4) who provided the Cardinals with points in both singles and doubles. Also winning in singles was Taylor Morales '13 at #6. Smith was part of the #2 doubles victory with McDougal while Clark paired with Softness at #3.
Before returning to match play with a visit to Nichols Wed., Sept. 22, a contingent of Cardinals ventured to Babson for the ITA Regional Tournament Sept. 17-19. There Aniello dropped her match to an MIT rival, 2-6, 4-6 while Robbins was forced to default her match for health reasons. In doubles play, McDougal and Smith teamed up to fall 3-8 to an Amherst tandem that was seeded #2 in the tournament and went on to place second.
At Nichols, Smith (#2), Softness (#4) and McDougal (#3) provided the Cardinals with five of their six points in a 6-3 victory, upping the team's mark to 3-0. Each won their singles match while Smith and McDougal were a winning tandem at second doubles while Softness joined Aniello for a victory at first doubles. The team's sixth point came from Clark at #6.
The Cardinals will look to extend their record to 4-0 when Roger Williams comes to Middletown Sun., Sept. 26.