Williams Wins Second-Straight NCAA Women's Tennis Title
Courtesy Oglethorpe/Williams Sports Information
LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. - For the second straight year and the fourth time in school history, Williams College won the NCAA Women’s Tennis Championships. The Ephs entered the Championships with only two losses on the season, both to Amherst, but won the critical Championship match today to post back-to-back women’s tennis titles for the second time in school history. The Ephs also won consecutive titles in 2001 and 2002.
Williams had to rally to claim the title after Amherst won two out of three in the doubles competition. They did so by topping the Lord Jeffs at the numbers one, three, four and five singles positions. Nicole Reich knocked off Jill Wexler at #3, 6-4, 6-3 while Lucy Marchese took care of Laken King at #5, 6-4, 6-0. Leading Amherst 3-2 on the scoreboard, Williams picked up the final two points for the Championship win in a matter of seconds from one another. At the #4 slot, Kristin Alotta put away Natasha Brown, 7-5, 6-4. Only moments later, Grace Baljon topped Brittany Berckes, 6-4, 6-3 to set off a wild celebration on the courts at the Collins Hill Athletics Club in Lawrenceville, Georgia.
Both Williams and Amherst finished the year with identical 21-2 records. Both losses for each team came at the hands of their rival. The Eph win snapped a 21-match Amherst win streak that was started after they lost their first match of the fall to the Ephs in Amherst 6-3.
With four NCAA titles the Ephs trail only Emory (5) for the most titles in NCAA Division III play. The Ephs are now 43-13 (.768) all-time in NCAA play and 4-2 in championship matches.
Williams is now 2-2 vs. Amherst all-time in NCAA Tournament action. Williams was the first NCAA Division III women's tennis team to repeat as national champions (2001 & 2002). The Ephs have now won four NCAA titles in the last nine seasons.
Williams 5, vs. Amherst 2
1 - Brittany Berckes/Natasha Brown (Amherst) def. Cary Gibson/Nicole Reich (Williams) - 8-3
2 - Grace Baljon/Taylor French (Williams) def. Mimi Bell/Anuja Ankola (Amherst) - 8-1
3 - Jill Wexler/Laura Danzig (Amherst) def. Annie Hancock/Kristin Alotta (Williams) - 8-2
1 - Grace Baljon (Williams) def. Brittany Berckes (Amherst) - 6-4, 6-3
2 - Carlissa King (Amherst) vs. Cary Gibson (Williams) - 6-3, 5-7 DNF
3 - Nicole Reich (Williams) def. Jill Wexler (Amherst) - 6-4, 6-3
4 - Kristin Alotta (Williams) def. Natasha Brown (Amherst) - 7-5, 6-4
5 - Lucy Marchese (Williams) def. Laken King (Amherst) - 6-4, 6-0
6 - Mimi Bell (Amherst) vs. Annie Hancock (Williams) - 7-6 (8-6) DNF