NESCAC Final: No. 2 Williams 5, No. 1 Middlebury 2

NESCAC Final: No. 2 Williams 5, No. 1 Middlebury 2

Courtesy of Williams Sports Information

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. - For the second year in-a-row, the NESCAC Women's Tennis Championship final was a battle between the top two seeds, No. 2 Williams and No. 1 Middlebury. The Ephs, avenged an regular-season loss to the Panther to claim their eighth NESCAC Title on Sunday via a 5-2 win over the top-seed at Lansing-Chapman Rink.

The Ephs propelled themselves to a strong start in the doubles portion by tallying points on two of the three courts.

The top pairing of Linda Shin and Juli Raventos collected the win on Court 1 against Skylar Schossberger and Katherine Hughes, 8-4, just moments before Hannah Atkinson and Chloe Henderson officially doubled the Ephs' advantage on Court 2 against Kaysee Orozco and Catherine Blazye by the same margin of victory.

The Panther duo of Alexandra Fields and Christina Puccinelli ensured that Middlebury remained within striking distance with six matches still to play in the singles portion by defeating Julia Cancio and Emily Zheng, 8-5.

In the singles matches, Atkinson jumped out to a lead over Heather Boehm, taking the first set 6-0, which she followed up with a 6-3 second set to reestablish the Ephs' two-point advantage.

Blazye overcame Shin on Court 4 with a commendable 6-4, 6-2 performance to keep Middlebury within striking distance. Following a loss in doubles, Cancio quickly put that setback behind her to dismiss Middlebury's Maddi Stow, 6-3, 6-2, to bring Williams within one point of claiming its third straight NESCAC Title.

Mia Gancayco delivered the finishing blow to the Panthers' title hopes, as she defeated Molly Paradies, 6-1, 6-4.

With their capture of the 2017 NESCAC Titles the Ephs claim an automatic bid into next week's NCAA Tournament. They are hopeful that they will play at home again next weekend, but they await the NCAA Tournament selection committee's decision on that front, which should be announced on Monday.

Williams 5, Middlebury 2 

  1. Raventos, Juli/Shin, Linda (WILLIAMS) def. Hughes, Katherine/Schossberger, Skylar (MIDDLEBURY) 8-4
  2. Atkinson, Hannah/Henderson, Chloe (WILLIAMS) def. Blazye, Catherine/Orozco, Kaycee (MIDDLEBURY) 8-4
  3. Fields, Alexandra/Puccinelli, Christina (MIDDLEBURY) def. Cancio, Julia/Zheng, Emily (WILLIAMS) 8-5
  4. Raventos, Juli (WILLIAMS) vs. Fields, Alexandra (MIDDLEBURY) 1-0 DNF
  5. Bush, Leah (WILLIAMS) vs. Puccinelli, Christina (MIDDLEBURY) DNP
  6. Atkinson, Hannah (WILLIAMS) def. Boehm, Heather (MIDDLEBURY) 6-0, 6-3
  7. Blazye, Catherine (MIDDLEBURY) def. Shin, Linda (WILLIAMS) 6-4, 6-2
  8. Gancayco, Mia (WILLIAMS) def. Paradies, Molly (MIDDLEBURY) 6-1, 6-4
  9. Cancio, Julia (WILLIAMS) def. Stow, Maddi (MIDDLEBURY) 6-3, 6-2

Order of Finish:
Doubles - 1, 2, 3
Singles - 3, 4, 6, 5

Match Notes:
Williams: 15-4
Middlebury: 14-4