PHILADELPHIA - Women's tennis had a couple of chances to break through and earn a team point, however, No. 41 Maryland (3-4) proved worthy of its national ranking, handing Penn (3-1) its first loss of the season. Althoughthe Quakersdid not get any team points, several players played tightly contested matches and Pennwasable to come away with the winduring theNo. 1 doubles match, upsetting the 37th-ranked doubles team in the country.
Maryland jumped out in front early with wins at No. 2 and No. 3 doubles to claim that point. At No. 2, Stephanie Do and Alex Ion split the first two games played, but Maryland's second pairing ran off the next seven games. At No. 3 doubles, Daniela DePaoli and Emma Whitfield found themselves down a break early, 3-0, but battled back to 4-2 before their opponents ran off four straight games to clinch the doubles point.
Despite Maryland having the doubles point in hand, Sol Eskenazi and Jules Rodin would not let Maryland have the clean sweep to start off the day. Playing against the nationally ranked pairing, Rodin and Eskenazi got an early break to go up 2-0. After splitting the next four games, making the score 4-2, Penn's top pairing earned another service break to go up 6-2.
The No. 1's would split the next two games and Maryland would hold serve on their chance, but Penn would finally put the match away with a service win, clinching the 8-4 victory. For Eskenazi and Rodin it was their second doubles win together in just three matches at No. 1.
In singles, Eskenazi again faced a nationally ranked opponent at No. 1 when she met up with 28th-ranked Cristina Stancu. Eskenazi got an early break, but her opponent then earned a break later in the set and they were tied at three-all through six games.Penn's freshman would have a pairof chances to claim the first set after going up5-4 and 6-5, but Stancu held her ground, forcing the tiebreak.
In the tiebreak, Eskenazi got down early, but rallied back, knotting the tiebreak score at three-all after successive points in her favor. Stancu would respond with three points of her own to go up 6-3, but on the sixth point won by Stancu, Eskenazi became injured and was unable to continue the tiebreak, forcing her to retire from the match in the highly emotional first set.
After a dramatic comeback win yesterday, Do could not repeat that same feat today. After falling in the first, 6-2, Do improved, but fell 6-3 in the second. At No. 4, DePaoli held a lead early on in the first set of her match before her opponent came back to tie the opening set at four-all. From there her opponent would not drop another game on the way to victory. After a tough first set at No. 6, Rodin came out strong in the second, getting the set to five-all before her opponent took the final two games.
In the matches at No. 3 and No. 5, Penn forced a pair of 10-point tiebreaks with the team score already decided. Ion jumpedwith a first set winat No. 3 in a tiebreak. After evenly splitting the first 12 games, Ion and her opponent went to a tiebreak. The tiebreak would also be a back-and-forth battle before the Quakers' freshman emerged the 7-5 tiebreak winner. Maryland's No. 3 would respond with a second set win, forcing a 10-point tiebreak. Ten pointswould not be enough however as the two players were tied at nine-all before Maryland took the last two points to claim the third match.
At No. 5, Whitfield dropped a 6-2 first set before turning the tables on her opponent by that same margin in the second set. However, her opponent would rebound quickly despite Whitfield's convincing second set win, taking the tiebreak at the fifth position.
The Quakers will now travel for the first road dual of the season. They will take the trip to Penn State next weekend where they will meet the hometown Nittany Lions on Friday. They will also play a neutral site match with Tulane that Saturday before returning home.
#41 Maryland 7, Penn 0
1: Sol Eskenazi/Jules Rodin (P) def. #37 Welma Luus/Ana Belzunce (M), 8-4
2: Jordan Hansbrough/Mikele Irazusta (M) def. Stephanie Do/Alex Ion (P), 8-1
3: Cristina Stancu/Vroni Van Berlo (M) def. Daniela DePaoli/Emma Whitfield (P), 8-2
1: #28 Cristina Stancu (M) def. Sol Eskenazi (P), 6-6 (6-3, ret.)
2: Ana Belzunce (M) def. Stephanie Do (P), 6-2, 6-3
3: Welma Luus (M) def. Alex Ion (P), 7-6 (5), 1-6, ((1-0), 11-9)
4: Vroni Van Berlo (M) def. Daniela DePaoli (P), 6-4, 6-0
5: Jordan Hansbrough (M) def. Emma Whitfield (P), 2-6, 6-2, ((1-0), 10-1)
6: Mikele Irazusta (M) def. Jules Rodin (P), 6-1, 7-5