The wind and the rain were not enough to stop the women’s tennis team Saturday, as the Colonials defeated Longwood 5-1 in the last home match of the season, and the team continued its success Sunday with a 7-0 sweep of Towson. GW extended its winning streak to three with its weekend victories.
Despite a delayed start time and a shortened warm-up session, the Colonials showed no signs of the weather playing a factor in their performance Saturday. Sophomore Mimi Hamling and freshmen Julia Blakeley and Leah Pascarella helped the team build an early lead, overpowering their opponents in straight sets. Senior Jennifer Hirsh, who was recognized before the match as the team’s only senior, overcame an early deficit for her ninth singles victory of the season. After losing the first set 3-6, Hirsh opened up the second by winning five-straight games and ultimately taking the second set 6-1.
“I made a decision to try and not make any unforced errors,” said Hirsh. “I started out the second set mentally tough, ran down every ball, and stayed with my new gameplan throughout the rest of the match until I ultimately won.”
As soon as Hirsh took the court for the third set super tie-breaker, the wind picked up and the rain began pouring, postponing play. The match was ultimately moved indoors, where Hirsh completed her come-from-behind victory. When asked about completing the last home match of her career, Hirsh admitted the feeling was “very bittersweet.” Hirsh stated that “tennis has been such a big part of my life for so many years that it will be difficult to leave the team and that kind of competition behind. However, I am also looking forward to my future endeavors and venturing into a new world without collegiate tennis.”
In addition to Hirsh, junior Jacqueline Corba also defeated her opponent in an indoor super tie-breaker, adding another win to the Colonials’ total.
GW continued its strong performance Sunday, sweeping Towson on its way to victory. The Colonials earned the doubles point after defeating the Tigers in all doubles matches, establishing a pattern of dominance that would continue throughout the afternoon. All Colonials singles players took their matches in straight sets, leading GW to its commanding victory. Head coach Dawn Buth was pleased with the team’s weekend performance.
“The team pulled out a strong win under irregular and unpredictable circumstances,” Buth said Saturday, adding the players are “starting to understand that each point of every match has value and they must be detail-oriented in holding themselves accountable for each and every point in which they compete.”
The Colonials will enter play in the Atlantic-10 Championship in Charlottesville, Va., Friday, April 8, with play continuing through the weekend.
“The A-10 tournament will be an absolute battle this year,” Buth said. “So we’ll also need to use this next week to build on our mindset of incredible mental toughness and the willingness to implement percentage tactics without fear of or focus on the end result.”