April 14, 2007
New Haven, CT - The Bulldogs (9-8, 4-1 Ivy) took sole possession of second place in the Ivy League with a 7-0 sweep of No. 69 Cornell (10-4, 3-2) Saturday in New Haven. Yale dropped only one set in the victory.
The Bulldogs came out filled with energy as they made sure to leave no doubt while battling the team they were tied with in the Ivy League. Yale began the day with a sweep of all three doubles matches. The freshman team of Jessica Rhee and Sarah Lederhandler rolled over Kasia Preneta and Dana Cruite 8-2 at No. 2 doubles. Playing at No. 1 doubles, the senior team of Christine Alford and Olivia Nix cruised to an 8-3 victory over Nisha Suda and Elizabeth Googe. With an emphatic winner by sophomore Janet Kim, Kim and junior Lindsey Dashiell rounded up the doubles sweep with an 8-4 victory over Tamara John and Sayna Miller.
Kim then came up with big shot after big shot as she cruised to a 6-1, 6-4 victory over Googe at No. 1 singles. Playing at No. 3 singles, Alford rolled to a 6-4, 6-1 win over John. In a match filled with long intense rallies, Lederhandler came up with the clincher in a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Preneta at No. 2 singles. Rhee blew by Suda at No. 4 singles 6-4, 6-3. Playing at No. 5 singles, Nix showed no lingering signs of a back injury as she defeated Cruite 6-1 6-4. Sophomore Lilian Nguyen wound up the day for the Bulldogs with a 3-6, 6-3, 10-5 win over Catherine Duboc.
Head Coach Danielle Lund said she was very proud of Yale's intensity and focus in the victory over Cornell.
"It's a huge positive for us," Lund said. "We knew they were going to be gunning for us since they were coming into today tied with us for second. Our girls were confident and composed. I could tell they were focused. [Cornell] would've had to have played their best tennis today to beat us. I just knew we were ready."
Lund attributed the Bulldogs great play to date in the Ivy League to a tough non-conference schedule in the beginning of the season that included more than five ranked opponents.
"Playing tough teams early on, we knew it would help us be more prepared for now," Lund said. "We had to raise our level. We look like a team who played such a tough schedule. We came out a better team for it."
Although the Bulldogs are only one game back of No. 51 Penn, the only team to defeat Yale in the Ivy League to date, Lund said the team will focus only on what it can control.
"It's totally out of our control," Lund said. "We are not worrying about things out of our control. We are just preparing for Harvard and Dartmouth. We are just worried about our next match."
Yale's next match is in Cambridge against defending Ivy League Champion Harvard next Friday. The Bulldogs then wrap up their season at home against Dartmouth next Sunday April 22.
1. Christine Alford / Olivia Nix (Y) def. Nisha Suda / Elizabeth Googe (C), 8-3
2. Jessica Rhee / Sarah Lederhandler (Y) def. Kasia Preneta / Dana Cruite (C), 8-2
3. Lindsey Dashiell / Janet Kim (Y) def. Tamara John / Shayna Miller (C), 8-4
Order of Finish: 2, 1*, 3
Yale Wins Doubles Point
1. Janet Kim (Y) def. Elizabeth Googe (C), 6-1, 6-4
2. Sarah Lederhandler (Y) def. Kasai Preneta (C), 6-3, 6-3
3. Christine Alford (Y) def. Tamara John (C), 6-4, 6-1
4. Jessica Rhee (Y) def. Nisha Suda (C), 6-4, 6-3
5. Olivia Nix (Y) def. Dana Cruite (C), 6-1, 6-4
6. Lilian Nguyen (Y) def. Catherine DUboc (C), 3-6, 6-3, 10-5
Orders of Finish: 1, 3, 2*, 4, 5, 6
Report filed by Steven Horn '10, Yale Sports Publicity