Jeffs unleash a racq' attack on Conn. Camels in home opener
The most compelling match of the afternoon was at the top singles position between quad-captain Rachel Holt ’05 and Camel Beret Remak. Back in September, Remak bested Holt, 6-1, 6-4, in the third round of the ITA New England Regional tournament-a rare defeat for Amherst’s captain, and one she was eager to avenge. However, as had been the case in this pair’s first meeting, Remak took control of the match early on Thursday and jumped out to a 4-1 lead.
“[Remak] has a very unorthodox game, and she is very frustrating to play against,” said Holt after the match. “It took me the first five games to find my rhythm.”
But after spotting Remak the three-game advantage to start the match, Holt indeed found her rhythm. Amherst’s top player started playing a more attacking style of tennis to better enable her to dictate the points. The dividend of this shift in strategy was readily apparent, as Holt won the final 11 games of the match to secure a 6-4, 6-0 victory. So dramatic was the swing in this match that Holt managed to get from down deuce point in the eighth game of the first set to a commanding 6-4, 2-0 advantage without dropping a single point.
Quad-captain Tristan Hedrick ’05, Kristen Raverta ’06, Hadley Miller ’06, Monica Snyder ’08 and Katie Hudson ’07 were all straight-set winners in second through sixth singles, respectively. No Amherst player surrendered more than four games in any of the six singles matches. Apart from Holt’s resounding comeback win, Snyder also played in a particularly noteworthy singles match.
Showing no apparent ill effects from an ankle injury that kept her from Coach Jackie Bagwell’s lineup in California, Snyder won 6-2, 6-2 in her first competitive singles match since the fall.
As in singles, the Jeffs were dominant in the doubles portion of the match. Holt and Hedrick breezed through their match at first doubles with an 8-2 victory, while the tandem of quad-captain Erin Murphy ’05 and Laura Stein ’08 had similar success playing in the third doubles position. Raverta and Hudson faced slightly stiffer resistance in their doubles match, but were ultimately able to pull out a hard-fought, 8-6 win.
“[Conn.] is certainly weaker than most of the teams we will be playing in the next few weeks, but they are scrappy,” said Holt.
Indeed, the level of Amherst’s competition will intensify quite a bit in the coming week. On Sunday, the Jeffs host Middlebury College, a team that finished the fall season as the second-ranked program in the Northeast. While Amherst’s showdown with Williams College later on in the month will likely draw more fan interest due to the intense nature of the rivalry, the players are most looking forward to Sunday’s competition.
“The Middlebury match will be a true test of the strength of our team,” said Murphy. “But I think our experience will give us the advantage in the match. I am hoping for a lot of crowd