Fordham Women’s Tennis Struggles in Recent Weeks


Fordham Women’s Tennis has gone cold, losing the last three out of four matches. (Courtesy of Fordham Athletics)

Since March 8, the Fordham women’s tennis team has entered a bit of a rough patch, going 1-4 in their matches in this period. The first match of this two-week stretch began with an immensely impressive performance from the team when they fell to Yale University 4-3.

This is about as high-quality of a loss you can get, which might sound strange. But it is important to note that Yale is nationally ranked and was the #57 team in the country at the time of play. Crushingly, Fordham would play another nationally ranked Ivy League team the very next day and lose to #42 Brown University by the same score of 4-3.

Although Fordham lost both matches, it is crucial to stress the importance of how well they played and how remarkable it was for the program to keep these matches so close. Coach Michael Sowter stated, “Even though we didn’t get the victory, we are playing at a level unseen at Fordham.” This is certainly true, and these two close losses compared to prior Ivy League performances corroborate that. Looking back at the team’s past performances against Ivy League schools, they currently have no victories and now stand at 0-10. However, in the eight previous matches before this recent two match slate, Fordham was shutout in five of them, and lost by a score of 6-1 in the other three. Although the team fell just short against both Yale and Brown, it is noteworthy how they were just out of reach from some of their biggest victories in recent years.

This past weekend, the team traveled during their spring break to California and competed in three different matches against schools in the state. They started with a 4-1 victory against the University of California, Riverside. This match, including the two in the following days were all played outside, which can be a tough transition for many players who are used to indoor courts. However, in this match, the team seemed largely unaffected as they managed to win thanks to their control in the singles matches. They won two of three doubles matches and won three of four singles matches.
Similar results unfortunately did not follow, as the exact opposite occurred in their next match against California State University Northridge with Fordham falling 4-1. They struggled to find the consistency from everyone that they had relied on in previous wins. The sole two wins would come from graduate student Carlota Casasampere Escoda in singles play, and a duo of junior Eleni Fasoula and senior Rachelle Yang in doubles.
Fordham continued to struggle the next day against California State University, Fullerton, as they would lose 4-1. The singles victory came from sophomore Lorraine Bergmann while the only doubles win of the three came from the team of graduate student Valeriya Deminova and senior Avery Aude.

Overall, it is extremely hard for a tennis program to string together multiple wins in a row against a plethora of upper-level talented teams. Because of this, regression could be expected from the start of the year given their increase in difficulty for the Rams schedule. However, it will be very interesting to see how the team manages to respond and bounce back from a series of tough losses.