PHILADELPHIA - Women's tennis fell to No. 70 Princeton, 6-1, to open Ivy League play on Saturday. Penn's lone point came at No. 1 singles where freshman Sol Eskenazi upended nationally ranked Hilary Bartlett of Princeton in straight sets. Bartlett, a senior, came into the match as the highest-ranked singles player in the Ivy League and was named first-team All-Ivy in each of her first three years at Princeton. She was also the Ivy League Player of the Year in 2010.
The Tigers opened up with three wins in doubles. At No. 1 doubles, it was a match of top-50 pairings as Jules Rodin and Eskenazi, ranked 49th, were up against No. 29 Lindsay Graff and Bartlett. In this match, Princeton's No. 1 pairing would show why they are the top-ranked doubles team in the Ivy League, handing Penn's top pairing just its second loss of the season.
In the second and third doubles, Princeton would showcase its depth. At No. 2, Daniela DePaoli and Alex Ion would win four games, the most of any Penn doubles team on Saturday, before falling 8-4. In the third doubles pairing, Stephanie Do and Emma Whitfield would take three games from their counterparts, but the Tigers would end up taking all three matches with an 8-3 win at No. 3.
Highlighting the singles play for Penn was the win by Eskenazi. Going up against the only Ivy League player ranked in singles nationally, Penn's freshman did not back down from the challenge of facing the nationally-ranked Bartlett. Eskenazi took this match in straight sets, winning both sets 6-4. With the victory, she moves to 8-1 during the spring season. For the year, she is now 15-3 overall.
Ion was the only other Quaker to take a set on Saturday in her match at No. 3. Another freshman, Ion opened her match with a 6-4 win in the first set before her opponent took the second set and forced a 10-point tiebreak. In the tiebreak, Ion would take five points, but fall 10-5.
Whitfield was not able to take any sets on Saturday, but pushed her opponent to the brink in both. Playing at No. 6, Whitfield found herself tied at five-all in the first set before her opponent took the final two games to go up 1-0. In the second set, she was tied at six-all, forcing a tiebreak. In the tiebreak, she took six points, but was edged out at the very end.
Do (No. 2) and DePaoli (No. 4) each took two games in their respective matches. Do played much better in her second set, but could not close the gap enough. DePaoli was dealt a pair of 6-1 defeats in her match. Playing at No. 5, Srinidhi Raghavan took three games from her opponent in the opening set, but would also fall victim to a straight set loss.
With the Ivy League opener behind them, the Quakers will look to bounce back next Friday and Saturday as they are back on the road against Brown and Yale. Penn returns home in two weeks against Harvard and Dartmouth.
No. 70 Princeton 6, Penn 1
1: #29 Hilary Bartlett/Lindsay Graff (Prin) def. #49 Sol Eskenazi/Jules Rodin (Penn), 8-2
2: Rachel Saiontz/Katie Goepel (Prin) def. Daniela DePaoli/Alex Ion (Penn), 8-4
3: Katherine Flanigan/Monica Chow (Prin) def. Stephanie Do/Emma Whitfield (Penn), 8-3
Sol Eskenazi (Penn) def. #96 Hilary Bartlett (Prin), 6-4, 6-4
2: Lindsay Graff (Prin) def. Stephanie Do (Penn), 6-0, 6-2
3: Rachel Saiontz (Prin) def. Alex Ion (Penn), 4-6, 6-0, 10-5
4: Katherine Flanigan (Prin) def. Daniela DePaoli (Penn), 6-1, 6-1
5: Monica Chow (Prin) def. Srinidhi Raghavan (Penn), 6-3, 6-0
6: Katie Goepel (Prin) def. Emma Whitfield (Penn), 7-5, 7-6 (6)