Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

TENNIS | Hoyas Outmatched in Trio of Weekend Losses


The Georgetown tennis program dropped three matches this past weekend to a host of nonconference teams, including George Washington, Old Dominion and Norfolk State. Despite the trio of losses, the competition against fierce opponents provided considerable help for the Hoyas before the Big East tournament, according to Head Coach Gordie Ernst.

“Of course we wanted to win and play better, but it’ll definitely help us get ready for the Big East. They’re very competitive teams we’ve played and very competitive kids,” Ernst said.

The Georgetown men’s team (7-12. 0-1 Big East) fell to cross-city rival George Washington (14-6, 3-0 Atlantic 10) on Friday in a 5-2 decision. The Hoyas secured the doubles point with victories in the second and third slots courtesy of senior co-captain Casey Distaso and sophomore Daniel Khanin as well as freshman duo Jack Murphy and Jordon Portner.

However, the Hoyas were unable to maintain this momentum in singles play. Khahin was the only player to secure a singles match victory for the Hoyas. In a three-set battle, he defeated GWU junior Francisco Dias 7-6 (5), 1-6, 6-4.

“He played to his potential,” Ernst said of Khanin’s Friday performance. “He played loose; he played inspired tennis; he played smart tennis. He did all the things we wish he could do every match.”

Earlier that day, the women’s team (9-10, 2-2 Big East) lost to Old Dominion (11-6, 1-0 Conference USA) in a 4-2 result. This season the women have struggled in doubles play, but Saturday it was their weak singles performance sealed the loss.

Senior co-captain Kelly Comolli and sophomore Liselot Koenen won points for Georgetown in the second and sixth slots, respectively. Comolli won the point when her opponent retired after a torn ACL. Koenen triumphed over Old Dominion senior Nika Khmolovska in a three-set match to secure Georgetown’s second point on the day. Koenen dropped the first set 3-6 but recovered in the second and third set to secure the victory. With the win the sophomore improves to 9-6 in singles play this season.

The rest of the women’s team, however, did not find the same success. Freshman Victoire Saperstein lost in the first singles slot in a three set match, 6-3, 3-6, 1-6. This loss drops the freshman’s record to 5-5 in her last 10 singles matches in the number one slot.

“She played a good player. She was up but then she ran out of gas. The girl wore her down, she got tired and she’s been struggling with a bit of a foot injury as well,” Ernst said. “But she’s still playing great; she’s going to come back next year and have a big-time year.”

Senior co-captain Madeline Jaeger, freshman Sophia Barnard and junior Sophie Panarese all fell in straight-set matches in the third, fourth and fifth singles slots, respectively.

The next day, the men returned to the courts to compete with Norfolk State (12-6). Despite picking up the doubles point, the Hoyas fell in a 4-3 decision to the Spartans. Norfolk State dominated singles play, winning four of the six matches. Distaso triumphed over Spartan senior Peter Pello in straight sets, while junior John Brosens won in a tight 7-5, 7-6 (9) decision at number six.

Georgetown won the doubles point, with juniors Alex Tropiano and Shane Korber winning at first doubles, 8-2, and Murphy and Portner winning at third doubles. However, the Hoyas’ poor performance in singles play determined the loss.

The only match remaining for the men’s and women’s team this season is with Big East rival Villanova. The Villanova men’s team (3-13, 0-0 Big East) visits the Hoyas after a 4-3 come-from-behind victory against Connecticut under their belt. Despite this recent success, the team did suffer a nine-match losing streak midway through the season. Georgetown has dominated Villanova, and currently has a five match-winning streak against the Wildcats. These matches have been close, however, as three have been 4-3 victories for Georgetown, while the other two were 5-2 wins.

The Villanova women’s team (3-12, 0-2 Big East) does not boast an impressive record either. Georgetown has a 4-1 record over Villanova in its past five meetings. Georgetown has dominated Villanova across the board, winning 28 individual matches to Villanova’s six in those five matches.

Although Big East matches hold significance, Ernst accentuated that the Wednesday match is much more meaningful than just a conference battle.

“The real big story on Wednesday is that it’s senior day for Casey Distaso, Kelly Comolli and Maddie Jaeger. Those three are very special kids and we’re going to really miss them.”

Both the men’s and women’s matches against the Wildcats will begin at 1 p.m. on the McDonough courts April 16.

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