Five UMass women’s tennis team members have been invited to Yale this weekend to compete in the Northeast Regional of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association nationwide invitational tournament.
The players receiving invitations to the tournament include the doubles team of Chantal Swiszcz and Yuliana Motyl and singles players Julia Comas, Sonia Bokhari and Jessica Podlofsky.
The tournament begins on Friday with qualifying matches and will run until the Oct. 25 when the doubles and singles champions will be crowned. The respective draws for both the doubles and singles are posted on Yale’s athletic website and on the ITA’s events schedule page.
Swiszcz and Motyl will begin play on Friday while all three singles players will start on Saturday. Comas, Bokhari and Podlofsky were all invited to the main draw of the tournament on Saturday, bypassing qualifiers on Friday.
The singles event consists of the top 128 singles players in the Northeast and the doubles draw has the best 32 teams competing, as determined by the ITA governing board.
UMass coach Judy Dixon said that she knows her players are capable of competing at the ITA level.
“These are the best players in the region and they are excited to go,” said Dixon.
The Minutewomen started off the season with two excellent performances by Glasper and Podlofsky. Podlofsky won her flight championship in both the Harvard Fall Classic as well as the Eastern Collegiate Invitational tournament and Glasper won her flight at the ECI tournament. Following her victory at the ECI’s, Podlofsky was named UMass Athlete of the week.
Doubles play has also started off well this year. As a doubles team, the duo of Glasper and Podlofsky got a victory against Connecticut, defeating their opponents 4-3. Also, the team of Motyl and Swiszcz made it to the finals of the Flight A doubles at the Harvard Classic.
However, despite its successes, the hot streak for the Minutewomen (1-1) came to an end last weekend as the squad lost to Fordham, 5-2. Fortunately for the Minutewomen, the loss will not go towards their A-10 record as the official women’s tennis season is in the spring. Regardless, the loss against a team Dixon thought her squad should have beaten will be tough to take.
The lone singles victory for UMass against the Rams came when Comas won her No. 4 singles match.
Podlofsky ‘s singles win streak of nine in a row came to an end against the Rams as well. Coming into the weekend, she was moved up to the No. 3 singles slot because of her fast start.
Dixon has said that she is very happy about her team’s start and although there is always work that needs to be done, she has a good feeling about her squad going into the spring.
She also said that she is impressed with the squad’s in-match toughness thus far, saying that the players have never given up on a set or on a match. She praised their mental toughness as well as their physical skill set, and said that, outside of the loss to Fordham, she has been impressed this fall.
This weekend’s play will be more about individual performances as the team members invited have a chance to impress the ITA and USTA as well as their fellow competitors.
Following the ITA championship this weekend, the squad will travel to Hanover, N.H. on Nov. 4 to play in the Big Green Invitational for what will be its last competitive match until late January of next year.
Cameron McDonough can be reached at email@example.com.