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Four-match winning streak snapped for UMass

The Massachusetts tennis team fell to Boston College 7-0 on Saturday at the Bay Road Tennis Club in Amherst. The loss was the second of the season for UMass, breaking their four-match winning streak and bringing their record to 7-2, while the Eagles raised their record to 4-5.

With the victory, BC  runs its all-time mark against UMass to 14-2. One of the oldest rivalries for the Minutewomen, the series between the two schools dates back to 1975. UMass has not beaten BC since the 2001-02 season.

UMass was battling injuries in this match, as freshman No. 2 singles player Julia Comas was unable to play. Comas had won four straight contests entering the Saturday match, and was replaced by Candynce Boney at No. 2 singles. Boney had the most competitive match of the day, but fell 7-6, 6-7 (10-6) to freshman Olga Khmylev.

Comas’ absence hurt the Minutewomen in more than singles play as well. Junior Kaitlyn Carpenter stepped up to fill Comas’ normal spot in doubles play, teaming up with sophomore Magdalena Ploch. However, the makeshift team was unable to overcome the well-seasoned squad of Katherine Atwell, who earned an eight-match winning streak earlier this season, and senior captain Brittany Delaney, as they lost 8-6.

No. 1 singles competitor Magdalena Ploch fell in straight sets to freshman player Alex Kelleher 6-2, 6-3. The result brings Kelleher’s record to 3-3 at No. 1 singles this season, while Ploch falls to 7-2 in dual match play and 9-3 overall. The loss also snapped Kelleher’s four-match winning streak.

At No. 3 singles, sophomore Katarina Gajic defeated senior Maude Lecluyse 6-4, 6-2. Gajic recorded a 7-5 mark in No. 3 singles action last year, and has been successful this season. The match was Lecluyse’s first at No. 3 singles this season, as she has earned a 4-4 record at No. 4 singles before this match.

BC earned the doubles point by sweeping the doubles matches.

The No. 1 doubles team of Lecluyse and Boney, who had a 10-2 mark going into the match, were unable to overcome the skill level of Kelleher and Khmylev, as they fell 8-4. 

In No. 3 doubles, Gajic and junior Jacqueline Mabatah teamed together to beat junior Tanisha Hodgson and freshman Jocelyn Providence. Hodgson and Providence records together fell to 8-3 with the loss. 

In other singles action, Atwell defeated Carpenter at No. 4 singles 6-1, 6-1, freshman Ina Kauppila beat Hodgson 6-3, 6-0, and senior captain Brittany Delany defeated Providence 6-4, 6-2.

The Eagles begin their annual southern spring break road trip after the match. They’ll also compete against Florida International before beginning Atlantic Coast Conference conference play. 

The Minutewomen travel to Dartmouth to face the Big Green at 5 p.m. tomorrow.  Dartmouth is 9-1 on the season and is coming off an 8-0 victory over Quinnipiac University on Sunday.

Ben Lambert can be reached at wlambert@student.umass.edu.

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