Freshmen impress at Intercollegiate Tournament

Oct. 26, 2017, 1:43 a.m.

Stanford men’s and women’s tennis competed in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s Northwest Regional tournament this past weekend, giving both teams a chance to compete in the usually dormant tennis offseason. The men traveled to the University of the Pacific, while the women hosted a contingent of other schools on campus at Taube Tennis Center.

The Stanford women found huge success in the tournament, with all four singles semifinals spots belonging to Cardinal competitors, and freshman Michaela Gordon winning the entire tournament in her first appearance as a Stanford student-athlete.

The women’s tournament began with 12 total entries by the women’s team into the main draw singles tournament. There was a large amount of success early on in the weekend, as five of those entries were able to make it into the round of 16. Sophomore Emma Higuchi fell in her round of 16 match 6-3, 6-4, but the rest of the team made it through to the quarterfinals and eventually semifinals.

Notable among those were No. 7 nationally-ranked junior Melissa Lord, as well as sophomore Emily Arbuthnott. Gordon was joined by fellow freshman Janice Shin, who was also competing in her first Stanford tournament.

In the semifinals, the team had to compete with itself, and teammates battled against each other for finals spots. Arbuthnott took down Lord in an upset victory with set scores of 7-6 and 6-4. The freshman duked it out as well, with Gordon taking the win handily, 6-1, 6-0.

This was the first time since 2014 that the finals of the ITA tournament would be an all Stanford matchup. In that match, Carol Zhao defeated current senior Taylor Davidson 7-6, 6-1. This year, Gordon dropped Arbuthnott in straight sets, 7-5, 6-2, capping off an incredibly dominant run through the bracket. Gordon won every single match in two sets, not dropping one through the entire tournament. She gave up more than three games in a set only three times during the weekend.

Stanford saw success in the doubles bracket as well, with two teams making it to the semifinals before both falling. Junior Caroline Lampl and Lord lost to the No.11 ranked doubles pair from Cal, while Gordon and Arbuthnott fell to eventual champions Alyssa Tobita and Shweta Sangwan from Oregon.

On the men’s side of the tournament, the Cardinal struggled significantly more, with only one member making it to the quarterfinals of the singles draw, and one doubles team reaching the round of 16.

It was a strong start to the Stanford career of freshman Timothy Sah as he advanced to the round of 16, winning three matches in straight sets before falling to Mike Pervolarakis of Portland in three difficult sets (2-6, 6-3, 5-7). Junior Sameer Kumar was the farthest-advancing Stanford competitor, making it to the top 8 before falling to Paul Barretto of Cal in straight sets.

The doubles team of Kumar and Sah was also responsible for making it to the top 16. They impressed in their early matches before falling to a duo from Cal. It was a slow weekend for the other Cardinal competitors, with few making it past the first round of play and falling to consolation ladders.

The next ITA tournament, the National Fall Championships, will take place on Nov. 1-5, and both Stanford teams will participate.


Contact Bobby Pragada at bpragada ‘at’

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