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Wednesday, Sep 28, 2022

Women’s Tennis Defeats Amherst and Skidmore

<span class="photocreditinline">ZEKE HODKIN</span><br />Maddi Stow ’20 (above) and her doubles partner, Christina Puccinelli ’19, beat their Amherst rivals 8-0 at the No. 3 spot.
Maddi Stow ’20 (above) and her doubles partner, Christina Puccinelli ’19, beat their Amherst rivals 8-0 at the No. 3 spot.

The Panthers wrapped up their regular season this past weekend as they picked up two victories against No. 6 Amherst (9-0) and No. 16 Skidmore (8-1). On Saturday, the Panthers blanked Amherst at home inside the Nelson Recreation Center before heading to Skidmore on Sunday for a 1:00 p.m. match. The Middlebury women’s tennis team has now won eight straight matches in a row, bringing their overall record to 13-1 and 7-0 within the NESCAC.

“We feel very fortunate to be in the position that we are in right now,” senior Christina Puccinelli said. “We can look back on a season of long practices and grueling matches and know that we’ve done everything we can to prepare ourselves for our goals of winning the NESCAC and NCAA titles!”

The Panthers kicked off the match against longtime “rival” Amherst by grabbing all three points during doubles play. The No. 3 duo of Puccinelli and Maddi Stow ’20 blanked Jackie Ahn and Laura Swenson 8-0, while the top squad of Heather Boehm ’20 and Ann Martin Skelly cruised past Risa Fukushige and Renee Karchere-Sun 8-2. The No. 2 junior duo of Katherine Hughes and Skyler Schossberger posted an 8-1 victory over Lily Feldman and Sofia Carlsson to secure the team’s third point.

The Panthers crushed their singles matches as well, sweeping all six points in straight sets. At the top of the lineup, Boehm won 6-3, 6-0, while Hughes clinched a 6-4, 6-0 victory against Smukler at the No. 2 spot. In the third flight, Puccinelli won 6-3, 6-3 against Dewire, while Schossberger triumphed 6-4, 6-3 over Ivenitsky at the No. 4 spot. At the No. 5 spot, Stow posted a 6-4, 6-1 victory against Camilla Trapness before Emily Bian ’21 rounded out the scoring with a 6-3, 6-4 win against Ramras at the bottom of the lineup. 

On Sunday against Skidmore, the Panthers once again took all three doubles points. The No. 3 tandem of Puccinelli and Stow came out firing to earn an 8-0 victory over Jackie Ahn and Laura Swanson, while Boehm and Skelly eased past Risa Fukushige and Renee Karchere-Sun 8-2 in the top flight. At the No. 2 spot, Hughes and Schossberger clinched the team’s third point with an 8-1 win against Lily Feldman and Sofia Carlsson. 

In singles action, Puccinelli did not drop a single game as she cruised past Karchere-Sun 6-0, 6-0 at the No. 3 spot. In the second flight, Hughes secured the team’s fifth point and overall victory with a 6-2, 6-0 win against Kaiova, Schossberger clinched a 6-2, 6-4 win against Feldman at the No. 4 spot. Emily Bian blanked her opponent at the bottom of the lineup and Stow posted a 6-4, 6-0 victory at the No. 5 spot. Skidmore picked up one point with a straight-set win at the top of the lineup for the final 8-1 score.

The Panthers are heading into the postseason on a high note as they eagerly anticipate the NESCAC Championships and NCAA playoffs. “We have five days to prepare for the NESCAC tournament and we plan to use them wisely,” Puccinelli said. “We all have individual projects that we come to practice with each day, and we will continue to work on those projects throughout the rest of the postseason. While we are all incredibly excited for the conference tournament, it will be important for us to approach this weekend just as we have every other weekend this spring.”

Middlebury will host the NESCAC Championships next weekend on the Proctor Tennis Courts.