Amherst Earns 5-1 Win Over Tufts in NCAA Quarterfinals
Contact: Justin Long
CLAREMONT, CA – The Amherst College women’s tennis team began the final week of its season with a 5-1 win over Tufts University Tuesday morning in the quarterfinal round of the NCAA Division III Championship. The Lord Jeffs will take on Emory University Wednesday at 2 p.m. (EST) for a spot in the 2011 title match.
Amherst improves to 19-2 on the season and 40-18 all-time in NCAA Tournament play, while the Jumbos end their impressive year at 16-6. Wednesday’s showdown between top-ranked Amherst and third-ranked Emory will be a rematch of last year’s national semifinals, which the Eagles won by a score of 5-4.
Jordan Brewer ’14 and Gabby Devlin ’14 have had a phenomenal first season as Amherst’s top doubles pair, but Tuesday’s 8-0 win over Shelci Bowman and Julia Browne was one of their most dominant performances of the year. Bowman and Browne entered the quarterfinals ranked No. 3 in the Northeast, but the Lord Jeff first-years looked unstoppable in their first appearance on the national stage.
Brewer and Devlin finished well before the rest of the field, but Tufts would eventually tie the score at 1-1 when Eliza Flynn and Lindsay Katz earned an 8-5 win over Natasha Brown ’11 and Laura Danzig ’12 at number two. Brown played extremely well down the stretch and seemed to be leading a comeback, but the Jumbos had built too large of a lead and held on for the win.
The pivotal third point provided fans with an exciting finish. Amherst’s Mimi Bell ’11 and Caroline Richman ’13 were in control for most of the match, but Tufts’ Samantha Gann and Lauren Hollender battled back to tie things up at 6-6. The Jeffs then held serve to take a 7-6 lead and closed out the 8-6 victory by breaking the Jumbos, with Richman playing phenomenally at the net and Bell holding the back line.
Caroline Richman '13 helped Amherst pick up two points.
Carlissa King ’11 quickly gave Amherst a 3-1 advantage with her 6-1, 6-2 win over Bowman at number three, and Richman soon followed with a 6-3, 6-1 victory against Hollender in the number five matchup. Three of the remaining four singles matches had gone into a third set, but it was Devlin who wrapped things up for the Lord Jeffs by earning a 6-1, 4-6, 6-2 win over Flynn at number five.
Brewer and Browne were in the midst of a back-and-forth match in the top spot when play was stopped. Brewer came out strong and quickly put together a 6-1 win in the first set, but the defending NCAA singles champion fought back to take the second frame, 7-5. When Devlin clinched the victory for Amherst, Browne was leading the third set, 1-0.
Danzig dropped her first set to Katz at number two, 6-4, but was in the midst of a strong comeback when play was halted. Similarly, Brown fell into an early hole against Gann in the final singles match but was able to rally, earning a 6-2 win in the second set before taking a 2-0 lead in the third.
Wednesday’s match between Amherst and Emory (22-4) at Claremont-McKenna’s Biszantz Family Tennis Center will feature a live video stream and live score updates. The Eagles are 9-2 all time against the Lord Jeffs, including a 6-1 mark during NCAA Championship play.
Amherst College def. Tufts University, 5-1
NCAA Division III Championship Quarterfinals
Tuesday, May 24 @ Claremont, CA
1) Jordan Brewer/Gabby Devlin (A) def. Shelci Bowman/Julia Browne (T) 8-0
2) Eliza Flynn/Lindsay Katz (T) def. Natasha Brown/Laura Danzig (A) 8-5
3) Mimi Bell/Caroline Richman (A) def. Samantha Gann/Lauren Hollender (T) 8-6
1) Julia Browne (T) led Jordan Brewer (A) 1-6, 7-5, 1-0 (DNF)
2) Lindsay Katz (T) led Laura Danzig (A) 6-4, 4-5 (DNF)
3) Carlissa King (A) def. Shelci Bowman (T) 6-1, 6-2
4) Gabby Devlin (A) def. Eliza Flynn (T) 6-1, 4-6, 6-2
5) Caroline Richman (A) def. Lauren Hollender (T) 6-3, 6-1
6) Natasha Brown (A) led Samantha Gann (T) 4-6, 6-2, 2-0 (DNF)
Order of Finish (Doubles): 1, 2, 3
Order of Finish (Singles): 3, 5, 4