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New Season, Familiar Foes for Bulldogs

The Yale women's tennis team. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
The Yale women's tennis team. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Bulldog Invitational and ITA Northeast Regionals to Take Place at Yale; Spring Slate Includes Texas Trip

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The 2014-15 schedule for the Yale women's tennis team promises an exciting season for the Bulldogs as they work towards regaining the Ivy League title.  The fall season will consist primarily of prestigious events hosted at Yale and several long-distance trips for the Bulldogs.  The spring season includes two familiar events and multiple familiar opponents, including the other seven Ancient Eight squads, all of which the Bulldogs will play in April as part of the Ivy League season. 

Though some dates, times and venues are yet to be finalized, what is certain is that Yale will be hosting one of the most important events on the fall calendar, the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Northeast Regional Championships.  Also at Yale will be the Bulldog Invitational, which will feature players from Yale, Brown, Dartmouth, Pittsburgh, Rutgers and William & Mary.  When not on home turf, the Bulldogs will be on the road, everywhere from Philadelphia, for the Cissie Leary Invitational, to Evanston, Ill., for the annual Wildcat Invitational. 

The spring portion of the season starts with two weekend events, the Crimson Tide Invitational and the ITA Kickoff.  Other events in the spring include the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference (ECAC) Championship and the highly-rated Blue-Gray Invitational in Montgomery, Ala.  Notably, the Bulldogs will only face two individual non-Ivy opponents at home in the spring.  One of these teams is Florida International, the only squad so far against which Yale did not compete in the 2013-14 season.  The second half of the 2014-15 season will also include a spring break trip to the Lone Star State, where Yale will compete against William & Mary, Rice and Texas.  The Ivy League season commences on Apr. 3 with a match against Penn.

Leading the Yale squad is Taka Bertrand, the new Swensen-McMahon Head Coach of Women's Tennis.  At the captain's helm will be Hanna Yu, who will look to rally her teammates to a fourth Ivy League Championship in five years.  Four impressive incoming freshmen—Carol Finke, Lauren Sapienza, Valerie Shklover and Elizabeth Zordani—will all be eager to help bring their new team to these greater heights.  

Here is a closer look at the Yale women's tennis 2014-15 schedule:

  • Unlike the 2013-14 season, which began with Yale's Bulldog Invitational, the Bulldogs' 2014-15 season will kick off with participation in the Cissie Leary Invitational at Penn.
  • Apart from the matches at the four events in the spring, the Bulldogs are currently scheduled to play five regular season non-Ivy matches, only two of which are at home (Boston and Florida International). 
  • Of the five regular season non-Ivy opponents that Yale will face in the spring, the Bulldogs defeated two of them—Boston and William & Mary—by comfortable margins last season.  Yale will be aiming to reverse its 2014 results against Rice and Texas.
  • The spring stretch includes two different treks to Alabama.  The first will be to Tuscaloosa, Ala., for the Crimson Tide Invitational in January, while the second will be to Montgomery, Ala., for the selective Blue-Gray Invitational in February. 
  • This season's Ivy League lineup includes three home matches and four away matches.  The three home matches will be against Columbia, Cornell and Dartmouth, in that order.  The four away matches will be against Penn, Princeton, Harvard and Brown, likewise in that order.
  • The schedule is subject to change.  Check for updates.

Report by Robert Batista '15, Yale Sports Publicity