CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – Mike Morgan came into Friday having never had a team compete at the ITA National Division III Women’s Team Indoor Championship. With No. 2 Pomona-Pitzer’s 8-1 first round victory over No. 7 Johns Hopkins on Friday, he’s one step closer to going 1-for-1 in ITA Indoor titles.
“Having never been to [ITA] Indoors, it’s been a really cool experience,” said Pomona-Pitzer women’s tennis head coach Mike Morgan. We know that Coach [John] Shackelford, the ITA, and Sewanee are hosting such a cool event. It’s such a good opportunity for our team.”
The Sagehens leaped out to an early 2-0 lead as the duo of Maryann Zhao and Emily Chen took their match quickly 8-1 and were followed by an 8-2 victory by Caroline Casper and Shivani Doraiswami. Johns Hopkins salvaged the remaining doubles point with Katie Gauch and Margo Gerke clawing out an 8-6 win in their match.
Pomona-Pitzer needed just three points in singles to clinch victory against the Blue Jays, and it got them quickly.
Emily Chen gave up just two games in her match, defeating John Hopkins’ Katie Gauch 6-2, 6-0 on court five to put the Sagehens up 3-1. That pace must have inspired Doraiswami on court four, as the senior managed to hold the Blue Jays’ Gerke to just one game, winning 6-1, 6-0.
Carolina Casper clinched victory for the Sagehens on court one, defeating Anjali Kashyap 6-3, 6-2.
The matches which remained were closer by comparison. After dropping the first set 5-7 to Sophia Strickland, the Sagehens’ Mary Ann Zhao roared back in the second to take the set 6-2. Her momentum would carry into the match tiebreak, as she won the final frame 10-3. Summer Garrison followed up with with a match-clinching set tiebreak in the second set of her match defeating Johns Hopkins’ Kimberly Zou 6-3, 7-6 (7).
The final match saw Rebecca Salaway of Pomona Pitzer scratched her way to a match tiebreak, defeating Chrissy Simon 6-3, 4-6, 10-8.
“They played great,” said Morgan. “This is a really coachable team and I’m proud of them.”
In the other Friday matches, top-seeded Emory took down host No. 8 Sewanee 9-0. Clementina Davila of Sewanee nearly took Bridget Harding to a match tiebreak on court one in what would be the closest singles match but dropped the match 2-6, 6-7 (6).
No. 3 Chicago defeated No. 6 Washington & Lee 7-2 in the lone match at the Baylor School.
No. 4 Carnegie Mellon defeated No. 5 Washington University in St. Louis 8-1 to start tournament play Friday morning.
Opening Round Results
No. 4 Carnegie Mellon def. No. 5 Washington University in St. Louis 8-1
No. 3 Chicago def. No. 6 Washington & Lee 7-2
No. 2 Pomona-Pitzer def. No. 7 Johns Hopkins 8-1
No. 1 Emory def. No. 8 Sewanee 9-0