NEW YORK – The #70 nationally-ranked Columbia women’s tennis team fell to #53 Maryland Sunday at the Dick Savitt Tennis Center, 5-2. The Lions clinched two tough singles wins against the Terps, but couldn’t pull off the team win. 

In doubles, Maryland clinched the point with two closes matches in the Nos. 1 and 2 spots. At No.1, sophomores Bianca Sanon and Tiana Takenaga fought well against one of the top doubles teams in the nation, but fell by just two games, to No.20 Ana Belzunce and Welma Luus, 8-6. Nicole Bartnik and Iani Alecsiu also stayed close in the No.2 doubles spot, but fell to Vroni Van Berlo and Cristina Stancu, 8-6. Columbia earned a win in the No.3 spot, as Crystal Leung and Katarina Kovacevic beat Jordan Hansbrough and Mikele Irazusta, 8-7(5). 

Singles saw two Lions get tough third -set wins for Columbia, while Maryland took four quick singles wins to clinch the match. In the No.1 spot, Bartnik fell to Stancu, 6-4, 6-2, while Sanon fell at NO.2 to Belzunce, 6-2, 6-2. Luss defeated Alecisu 6-3, 6-1 at No.3, while Takenaga fell to Irazusta, 6-4, 6-2 at No.6. 

First-year Leung had the first point for the Lions, as she had a three set win in the No.4 spot. Leung beat Van Berlo, 6-2, 0-6, 7-6(7). And Kovacevic made it two for Columbia with a 5-7, 7-6(4), 1-0(3) win over Hansbrough at No.5.

Up next for the Lions is another top-rated opponent, as the Lions will host #53 Memphis, Saturday, March 3 at 1 p.m. 

Maryland 5, Columbia University 2

1. #20 Ana Belzunce/Welma Luus (MD) def. Bianca Sanon/Tiana Takenaga (COL) 8-6
2. Vroni Van Berlo/Cristina Stancu (MD) def. Nicole Bartnik/Iani Alecsiu (COL) 8-6
3. Crystal Leung/Katarina Kovacevic (COL) def. Jordan Hansbrough/Mikele Irazusta (MD) 8-7 (5)

1. #46 Cristina Stancu (MD) def. Nicole Bartnik (COL) 6-4, 6-2
2. #99 Ana Belzunce (MD) def. Bianca Sanon (COL) 6-2, 6-2
3. Welma Luus (MD) def. Iani Alecsiu (COL) 6-3, 6-1
4. Crystal Leung (COL) def. Vroni Van Berlo (MD) 6-2, 0-6, 7-6 (7)
5. Katarina Kovacevic (COL) def. Jordan Hansbrough (MD) 5-7, 7-6 (4), 1-0 (3)
6. Mikele Irazusta (MD) def. Tiana Takenaga (COL) 6-4, 6-2