WALTHAM, Mass. – The Brandeis University women's tennis team picked up its first victory of the season today with a 5-2 victory over Division I Merrimack College in a match played indoors in the Gosman Athletic Center today. The Judges improve to 1-1 on the campaign, while the Warriors fall to 2-6.
The Judge fell behind after doubles. With the teams playing under Division I rules, Merrimack won at #1 and #3 to take the point. Brandeis won the first match of the day, as junior Ana Hatfield (Rockford, Ill. / Boylan Central Catholic) and rookie Ella Subramanian (Parkland, Fla./Laurel Springs) teamed for a 6-3 win. After MC won, 6-2, at #1, the visitors narrowly took the decisive doubles match, 7-5, at #3.
Brandeis responded with strong play at singles. The Judges won two of the first three matches to take the courts. Despite being one of only two three-set matches, senior Lauren Bertsch (Middletown, R.I. / LaSalle Academy) got the Judges on the board first with a 3-6, 6-0, 10-7 win at #1. Merrimack picked up their lone singles win at #3, 6-2, 6-3, but Hatfield won her second match of the day, 6-2, 7-6, at #2. Hatfield's 8-6 win in the second-set tiebreaker evened the overall match at 2-2.
The Judges won two of the three matches in the next wave in straight sets. Junior transfer Olivia Howe (Cary, N.C. / Crossroads Flex) lost just two games at #6, 6-1, 6-1, to put Brandeis within one point of victory. Senior Isabel Cepeda (Mason, Ohio / William Mason) clinched the win with a 6-4, 6-2, victory at #5. Both Howe and Cepeda defeated the opponents who had beaten them earlier in doubles action. Subramanian closed out the match at #4 with a marathon third-set super-tiebreaker, 6-2, 3-6, 12-10.
The Judges return to action next Friday afternoon at 3 p.m. against their cross-town rivals from Bentley University.