#24 Brandeis Women's Tennis Claims Fifth Place at Nor'Easter Bowl

Emily Eska
Emily Eska

WALTHAM, Mass.- The 24th-ranked Brandeis women's tennis team rebounded from an opening day loss to 19th-ranked Skidmore at the Third Annual Nor'Easter Bowl to defeat Babson College and Wellesley College. The Judges earned fifth place and improved to 6-8 on the year.

In their consolation semifinals matchup with the Beavers on Saturday April 5th, Brandeis took a 2-1 lead after doubles action. At third doubles, seniors Marissa Lazar (Hewlett, N.Y./Lynbrook) and Allyson Bernstein (Northbrook, Ill./Glenbrook North) blanked their opponents 8-0. At the first doubles position, junior All-American Carley Cooke (San Diego, Calif./Point Loma) and senior Roberta Bergstein (Hingham, Mass./Hingham) cruised to an 8-2 victory.

The Judges carried that momentum into their singles matches and clinched a quick win over the Beavers. Brandeis took the first three singles positions to build a 5-1 advantage. Cooke dropped just three games in her 6-2, 6-1 victory at first singles while Bernstein and Bergstein earned straight set wins at the second and third positions, respectively. Bernstein cruised to a 6-0 first set victory before closing out the match 6-4 in the second, while Bergstein battled to a 7-5 first set win before running away with a 6-1 second set.

Brandeis also took fifth and sixth singles but dropped fourth for a 7-2 final tally. Junior Simone Vandroff (Moss Beach, Calif./Half Moon Bay) battled back from down a set to claim a 4-6, 7-5, 10-6 victory in a super tiebreaker at fifth. Sophomore Hannah Marion (Hillsborough, N.C./Cedar Ridge) also went the distance, rebounding from a loss in a first set tiebreaker to win 6-7, 6-3, 10-7.

On Sunday April 6th, the Judges faced off against the Blue in the fifth place game, a rematch from earlier this season. This match went down to the wire as the result hung in the balance until the fourth singles competition.

In doubles action Wellesley took the first two positions by 8-4 scores before Lazar and Bernstein came through with an 8-3 victory at the third spot.

Brandeis began their comeback in the singles matches as they took fifth, third, and second in that order to claim a 4-2 lead. Vandroff turned in a 6-0, 6-0 result at fifth, Bergstein nearly matched her with a 6-0, 6-1 victory at third, while Bernstein won in straight sets 6-4, 6-3 at second.

The Blue battled back, taking two very tight matches. At sixth singles, senior Alexa Katz (Philadelphia, Pa./Abington Friends) rebounded from dropping the first set with a 6-1 result in the second but could not complete the comeback as she fell 6-3, 1-6, 6-4. Meanwhile, Cooke played the closest match of the day at first singles, winning the first set 6-4 before falling in two straight tiebreakers for 4-6, 7-6, 7-6 (5) defeat to tie the match at 4-4.

In the final match of the competition, sophomore Emily Eska (Princeton, Mass./Wachusett Regional) faced off against rookie Lina Ye (Milpitas, Calif./Milpitas) at fourth singles. Eska battled to a first set tiebreaker and won 7-5 but Ye came right back with a 6-1 victory in the second to force a decisive third set. After Ye took a 3-2 lead, Eska rallied to win four consecutive games and claim the 7-6 (5), 1-6, 6-3 victory that secured a 5-4 victory and fifth place for the Judges at the Nor'Easter Bowl.

Brandeis is back in action at Wheaton College on Thursday April 10th at 4:00 p.m. Babson closes out their regular season with a home match against Connecticut College at 3:00 p.m. on Friday April 11th. Wellesley begins the Seven Sisters Tournament on Saturday April 12th.