Spring Preview: Women's Tennis
Issue   |   Tue, 03/04/2014 - 21:56

As usual, the Amherst women’s tennis team will open the season with lofty expectations. Over the last ten years, Coach Jackie Bagwell’s squad has captured eight NESCAC championships, as well as advancing to at least the NCAA semifinals eight times. Bagwell, who is entering her 23rd year at the helm, has compiled a dual meet record of 358-72, and also guided the team to an NCAA championship in 1999. Last year’s team put together an impressive 21-3 record, but fell just short of the NESCAC and NCAA titles, losing to Williams in the NESCAC championship and Emory in the NCAA semifinals. Jordan Brewer ’14 and Gabby Devlin ’14 did combine to win the Div. III doubles title.

Brewer is also the Jeffs’ top singles player. She compiled a 10-6 record in the No. 1 spot last year, finishing the season ranked fourth in Div. III, and also earning All-American and first team All-NESCAC honors. Senior Jen Newman put together a 10-5 record from the No. 2 singles spot, which earned her a ranking of 19th nationally, along with a second team All-NESCAC selection. Senior Zoe Pangalos also captured second team All-NESCAC honors. She demonstrated the team’s impressive depth, going 15-2 in the No. 5 and No. 6 singles spots. Newman and Pangalos generally played doubles together, ending the year ranked 10th in the northeast. With Brewer, Devlin, Newman, and Pangalos, the Jeffs have four of their five all-conference players returning from last season. Newman and Pangalos will serve as captains this year, along with fellow seniors Isabel Camacho and Mary Soyster. Junior Safi Aly will likely round out Amherst’s top five. She went 16-5 in doubles last year, and posted a 3-3 mark in singles.

The Jeffs competed in three tournaments and a dual match with Williams this fall. The Columbia Invitational (Sep. 13-15) featured some tough Div. I competition, as Amherst faced off with Columbia, Penn and St. Johns. After a tough first day, Brewer and Devlin managed to pick up singles and doubles wins on days two and three. The Jeffs dominated the ITA New England Regional Championships at Williams two weekends later, with Brewer and Devlin coasting to the doubles title and Brewer defeating her partner to win the singles title. On Oct. 5, the Jeffs dropped the lone dual match of the fall to Williams 6-3, despite a doubles win from Brewer and Devlin. Finally, Brewer and Devlin won the New England Women’s Intercollegiate Tennis Tournament, in which pairs play a doubles match and then split up for singles matches.

Amherst will open the season with a dual match at MIT on March 8.