#20 Spartans Top #30 Brandeis to Finish Fifth at 2016 UAA Women’s Tennis Championships

#20 Spartans Top #30 Brandeis to Finish Fifth at 2016 UAA Women’s Tennis Championships

The 20th-ranked Case Western Reserve University women's tennis team turned in its second-straight dominating performance at the 2016 University Athletic Association Championships, defeating 30th-ranked Brandeis University 9-0 to finish fifth in the conference tournament at Sanlando Park in Altamonte Spring, Florida on Sunday.

The Spartans, seeded fifth in the field, finished the UAA Championships with a 2-1 record, and improved to 14-5 overall for the season.  The victory was the team's eighth this season against a nationally-ranked opponent, with the squad going 8-5 against teams appearing in the ITA Division III Women's Tennis poll.  Brandeis, the seventh-seeded squad at the UAA championships, fell to 9-9 for the season with the loss and finished sixth at the conference tournament.

The Spartans opened up play against Brandeis by sweeping each of the three doubles matches.  Seniors Surya Khadilkar and Michelle Djohan topped Brandeis' Sophia He and Charlotte Aaron 8-2 in the second doubles match, and at first doubles, sophomore Nithya Kanagasegar and Sara Zargham picked up an 8-4 win over Olivia Leavitt and Haley Cohen.  Rounding out the doubles sweep, senior Taylor Sweeney and freshman Jessica Liu earned an 8-6 victory over Emily Eska and Maya Vasser.

Djohan would go on to register the first singles win of the match for the Spartans with a 6-1, 6-0 win over Vasser in the fifth singles match, giving Case Western Reserve a 4-0 lead.  Liu would then clinch the match for CWRU with a 6-2, 6-3 win over Leavitt at second singles.

The Spartans went on to get straight-set wins at third singles from Khadilkar over Keren Khromochenko, 6-4, 6-3, at fourth singles from Sweeney over Eska, 6-3, 6-1, and at sixth singles from Zargham, 6-2, 6-4 over Michele Lehat.  Kanagasegar capped off the win with a come-from-behind win at first singles, defeating Cohen 4-6, 6-4, 10-7.

Kanagasegar finished the UAA Championships with perfect 3-0 records in both singles and doubles matches.  Sweeney added a 3-0 mark in singles play, and the duo of Djohan and Khadilkar added a 3-0 doubles record during the weekend.  As a team, Case Western Reserve went 8-1 in doubles matches and 14-4 in singles play during the tournament.

The end of the UAA Championships marks the end of the 2016 regular season for the Spartans, who will now await the selection announcement for the field for the NCAA Division III Championships.  Team selections are scheduled to be posted to NCAA.com by noon on Monday, May 9th, with individual selections slated to be posted to the website at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 11th.