USTA/ITA Day 3 Recap: Middlebury rookie wins singles title
LEWISTON, Maine — Middlebury first-year Lok-Sze Leung captured the singles title at the USTA/ITA Division III Women’s New England Regional Championship on Sunday, as the three-day tournament concluded at Bates College.
The Hong Kong native routed Nancy Worley of Williams in Sunday afternoon’s final, 6-0, 6-1. Leung now advances to play in the USTA/ITA National Small College Championships, Oct. 13-16 in Mobile, Ala.
Leung, the fourth seed at the tournament’s outset, got past Middlebury teammate Leah Kepping in Sunday morning’s semifinal round, 6-1, 6-4. Worley also defeated a teammate, unseeded Williams first-year Maria Pylypiv, 6-2, 6-1 in the other semi.
Amherst’s Jordan Brewer and Laura Danzig won the doubles competition, defeating Nancy Worley and Kara Shoemaker of rival Williams in the championship match by an 8-5 score. Brewer and Danzig outlasted Middlebury’s Leung and Sally Wilkey 9-7 in Sunday morning’s semifinals, while Worley and Shoemaker defeated a different Amherst pair, Jennifer Newman and Zoe Pangalos, 8-5 in the other semifinal.
Middlebury’s Leah Kepping defeated top-seeded Jordan Brewer of Amherst on Saturday in the Round of 16 at the USTA/ITA Division III Women’s New England Regional Championship, the standout performance of the second day.
Kepping, one of the players who started the singles competition as one of the pool of seeds 9 through 16, got past Brewer by a 7-6(2), 6-1 score, then defeated 5-8 seed Kara Shoemaker of Williams 6-2, 6-0 in the quarterfinals. Kepping will face her Middlebury teammate, fourth-seeded Lok Sze-Leung, in one of Sunday’s semifinal matches. The other semifinal will also pit two teammates against one another: third-seeded Nancy Worley of Williams, the top remaining seed, against unseeded Maria Pylypiv of Williams. Pylypiv knocked off second-seeded Kellen Albertstone of Bowdoin 6-1, 6-1, in the Round of 16 on Saturday morning, followed by a 6-3, 7-6(4) decision over seeded teamate Kathleen Elkins.
The tournament’s doubles field has also been whittled down to the semifinals for Sunday from the original 32-team field. Brewer and Danzig of Amherst, the No. 2 seeds, will take on Leung/Wilkey of Middlebury in one semifinal. The other will pit two unseeded teams in Amherst’s Newman/Pangalos and Williams’ Worley/Shoemaker, who knocked off top-seeded Albertsone/Winingham of Bowdoin.
Bates first-year Elena Mandzhukova and senior captain Meg Anderson won a first-round match in the doubles draw on Friday at the USTA/ITA Division III Women’s New England Regional Championship, highlighting the first day of the tournament for the host Bobcats.
All of the top eight seeds won twice on Friday in the first two rounds of singles play, advancing to Saturday’s Round of 16. In doubles play, all of the top four seeded pairs also advanced to play another day.
Top-seeded Jordan Brewer of Amherst won in straight sets in both of her matches to headline the Round of 16. Only two of the 16 seeds fell in the first round: Rebecca Curran of Williams defeated Marie Watanabe of Wellesley, one of the players in the pool of seeds 9 through 16. Another Williams Eph, Maria Pylypiv, scored the other upset, defeating Bates’ Mandzhukova (Lisbon, Portugal), another 9-16 seed. Curran and Pylypiv both won in the second round this afternoon as the two unseeded players in the Round of 16.
Two rounds of the doubles competition were also completed, and by the end of the day six of the eight seeded teams had made it to Saturday’s quarterfinals. Top-seeded pair Kellen Alberstone and Kate Winingham got through to the quarterfinals with an 8-4 victory over Carney/Cleary of Springfield and an 8-5 win over Gann/Lam of Tufts.
In other matches featuring players from the host Bobcats, Mandzhukova teamed up in doubles competition with senior captain Meg Anderson (Cohasset, Mass.) to record an 8-3 win over Middlebury’s Burke/Meyers duo, before falling to seeded Tufts pair Katz/Bowman. Bates’ other doubles pair in the tournament, senior captain Erika Blauth (Camden, Maine) and sophomore Kristen Doerer (Madison, Conn.), lost 8-5 to Dyakiv/Benoit of Nichols College.
Competing in the singles tournament for Bates, junior captain Jacqui Holmes (Harvard, Mass.) was defeated 6-1, 6-1 by Lyndsey Cook of Wheaton. Elsewhere, Anderson lost 6-1, 6-1 to a 9-16 seed, Bowdoin’s Emily Lombardi.