Spartans women’s tennis succeeds against top competition

Team defeats nationally ranked 27 and 38 squads

The Case Western Reserve University women’s tennis team continued their hot start this past weekend with two wins over two ranked opponents. First the Spartans traveled to Hope College, where they blew out the number 27 team in the country 8-1. The Spartans followed that victory with a win—a strong 7-2 over number 38 Kalamazoo.

The Spartans got out fast against Hope as they swept all three doubles matches. The Spartans won the second and third doubles matches 8-2, while they took the first doubles match by a score of 8-6. Second-year student Nithya Kanagasegar, who is ranked number 15 nationally for singles, beat her opponent who was ranked number 33 nationally in straight sets, 6-3, 6-3. The Spartans’ only loss was at seconds singles, when fourth-year student and captain Taylor Sweeney lost in a tiebreak 10-3.

CWRU continued the hot play the morning of Feb. 14 when they beat their second straight nationally ranked opponent. The Spartans started strong in doubles again by taking two of the three doubles matches. Hot play carried over into the singles matches as CWRU took four out of the five singles matches. The Spartans were able to seal the victory with two blowout wins as fourth-year student Surya Khadilkar won her match 6-0, 6-0 at fifth singles, and second-year student Nina Cepeda beat her opponent, 6-0, 6-1, at sixth singles to close the match in style.

The doubles pairs have provided strong starts for CWRU, as they have won a majority of the games in all three of their matches. The wins that the doubles pairings are providing allow some pressure to be taken off the singles players in their matches as they have been playing with a lead.

With this strong start to the season, the Spartans will look to move up in the next national rankings when the ITA Division III Women’s Collegiate Tennis Rankings come out on March 3. CWRU ranks fourth in the central region and will look to move up when they face Washington University in St.Louis and University of Chicago, who are currently ranked ahead of them.

First, the Spartans turn their attention to their next two matches, where they will look to continue their hot play when they face Allegheny College on the road on Feb. 27. CWRU then opens up conference play at University of Rochester on Feb. 28.