William and Mary split matches with a pair of nationally ranked Old Dominion tennis teams this weekend. The No. 70 men’s team (12-8, 0-1 CAA) fell in a 4-0 defeat, while the No. 36 women’s team (15-6, 1-0) eked out a 4-3 victory with sophomore Maria Groener’s straight-sets win at No. 6 singles.
In the Tribe women’s last match of the season, they fell behind early to No. 62 Old Dominion (11-6) when the Monarchs captured two straight doubles sets. However, the College’s dominant top three singles players continued their command of CAA opponents, as senior Elizaveta Nemchinov, junior Marie Faure and freshman Lauren Goodman all took straight-sets victories to put the Tribe in front. The trio has a combined 48-20 record this season.
Although senior Julia Casselbury dropped a tough three-set match at No. 4, Groener surged to a 6-0 first-set win, before polishing off her opponent with a 6-4 second set to take the match for the Tribe and finish the regular season with a victory. The College, as the defending conference champions, will probably hold the No. 1 seed going into the Colonial Athletic Association Championships, which begin April 22 at Elon in North Carolina. Winning the CAA would send them to the NCAA tournament a year after exiting in the first round to Dartmouth.
Meanwhile, the men’s team struggled against No. 40 Old Dominion (18-4, 2-0 Conference USA), failing to win a set in a 4-0 loss that hurts the College’s chances of winning the CAA regular season title. The Tribe men also are defending conference champions but could not get going against a highly-rated Monarchs team that boasts the nation’s No. 50 doubles pair.
After the College dropped the doubles point with a pair of losses, sophomore Christian Cargill could only pick up a single game in a 1-6, 0-6 loss at No. 1 singles. Sophomore Lars de Boer did not fare much better at No. 4. Despite boasting a 10-6 dual match record on the season, de Boer was handed a 2-6, 1-6 defeat by Old Dominion’s Javier Jover Maestre. Junior Addison Appleby had the chance to get the College back into the match, but could not overcome the Monarchs’ Aziz Kijametovic, taking a 4-6, 0-6 loss. The Nos. 3, 5 and 6 games were abandoned after the result was confirmed.
This loss means that the College will likely miss out on the No. 1 seed at the CAA Championships, which begin April 22. First, the men’s team will look to close the season with two victories when they host Navy and CAA rival James Madison next weekend. The Tribe then hopes to return to the NCAA Tournament, after last year they were swept 4-0 by No. 13 North Carolina in the first round.