Competition on both the East and Best Coasts kept the Georgetown tennis program active over spring break, as the Hoyas participated in multiple matches on the men’s side and a single Big East matchup on the women’s side over the course of the week.
The Georgetown men’s squad (4-4, 0-2 Big East) kicked off its spring break matches at the Pacific Coast Doubles Tournament in La Jolla, Calif., which spanned from Thurs., March 5, to Sat., March 7. The tournament, in its 126th year, was composed of over 100 doubles teams.
“There are a lot of good universities that come and play in it, and you end up playing some really good teams,” graduate student Andrew Dottino said. “It was nice because it also led us into the outdoor season, because it’s always tough going from indoor to outdoor.”
The tournament is open to all men’s doubles teams, which allowed Head Coach Gordie Ernst and Assistant Coach Brian Ward to take part in the competition. Ernst and Ward began as a No. 123 seed, ultimately falling 8-4 in their match. The competition was tough, and the farthest that Georgetown duo got in the tournament was to the Round of 64.
Sophomore Jordan Portner and freshman Mac Rechan fell in their match 8-4, while freshman Peter Beatty and senior John Brosens also lost 8-4. Dottino and senior Shane Korber lost 8-5 in the Round of 128. Junior Daniel Khanin and sophomore Jack Murphy faced a particularly strong pair and were swept 8-0. Freshman Marco Lam and senior Alex Tropiano also lost 8-4.
“It was definitely cool seeing all these other teams and getting the chance to play them,” Khanin said.
Following the tournament, the Hoyas engaged in match play with multiple California schools. Georgetown fell to No. 17 UC San Diego (8-7) in a tight 4-3 contest March 8. Though the Hoyas triumphed in third, fourth and fifth singles, they lost the majority of the doubles matches. Lam won a close match at the third singles slot in a 7-6, 6-4 result. Beatty also won in straight sets at fourth singles, winning 7-5, 6-3. Murphy won in a three-set match, with a final score of 6-3, 4-6, 6-3.
“I thought everyone fought pretty well. It’s always difficult in the first match outdoors, you have to handle all these conditions — sun, wind — that you don’t have indoors, so it was pretty good,” Dottino said.
Georgetown triumphed March 11 over UC Riverside (2-10) in another 4-3 result. Though the Hoyas were swept in all three doubles matches, their four wins in singles play helped them edge the Bears.
Lam played in first singles, ultimately falling in a three-set match concluding in a 7-6, 4-6, 10-8 result. However, victories at second, third, fourth and sixth singles notched the win for Georgetown. Beatty won 6-0, 6-2, Tropiano won 7-5, 6-3, Murphy won 6-3, 6-4 and Rechnan won 6-2, 6-2.
“It was nice that we rallied,” Dottino said. “Coming back from losing the doubles point to win four singles was pretty huge.”
The Georgetown women’s team (8-2, 1-1 Big East) also took part in match play during spring break. In its second Big East matchup of the spring season, Georgetown edged Seton Hall (4-7, 0-1 Big East).
The Hoyas’ success in doubles play was crucial to their win. Junior Liselot Koenen and senior co-captain Sophie Panarese won 8-5, triumphing over the Pirate duo of juniors Julia Keenan and Hannah Liljekvist. Junior Taylor Perz and sophomore Victoire Saperstein won at second doubles 8-4, and sophomore Sophie Barnard and freshman Casey Marx won 8-1.
Panarese, Barnard and Marx all notched singles wins in the second, third and sixth singles slots, respectively. Panarese played a three-set match, winning 6-2, 4-6, 6-0. Barnard won her first set decisively in a 6-1 score, but notched her second set in a much closer 7-5 duel. Marx fell in her first set 6-2, but won the second and third sets 6-3.
Both the men’s and women’s teams will prepare to compete the University of Pennsylvania this upcoming weekend. The Quakers’ men’s squad (12-3) is coming off a 4-2 loss to the University of Texas Arlington, while the women’s team (5-4) was recently swept 7-0 by No. 33 Arizona State.
The matches against Penn will take place March 20 for the women and March 21 for the men, both in Philadelphia.