NEW YORK - The No. 51 Columbia women’s tennis team took down No. 32 Yale for the first time since 2006 in the ECAC Championship match on Sunday, Feb. 9 at the Dick Savitt Tennis Center, 4-1.
The doubles competition kicked the match off in an exciting fashion. Tiana Takenaga and Ioana Alecsiu dropped their No. 3 match against Yale’s Courtney Amos and Annie Sullivan, 1-6. Teammates No. 24 Bianca Sanon and Kanika Vaidya kept the Lions in the running by bringing down Madeleine Hamilton and Ree Ree Li in the No. 1 match, 6-2.
It all came down to the No. 2 match between Columbia’s No. 20 Crystal Leung and Tina Jiang and Yale’s Hanna Yu and Sherry Li, which was neck-and-neck the whole time. The Lions came back from a 3-5 deficit to tie it up at 6-6. In an intense back and forth tiebreaker, the Lions came back again from a 3-6 deficit to win, 8-6, and clinch the doubles point for the Lions.
The singles competition had the same high intensity as the doubles. Yale come out swinging in all matches pushing tiebreakers in the first set of both the No. 1 and No. 2 matches. Yale tied up the match, 1-1, when Yu took down Takenaga in straight sets in the No. 5 match, 6-3, 6-4.
Jiang continued fighting to put the Lions back in the lead when she brought down Sherry Li in the No. 3 match, 6-4, 6-4. Vaidya brought the Lions to a 3-1 lead, defeating Hamilton in No.1 match 7-6, 6-0. Alecsiu brought home the gold in the No. 6 match, topping Courtney Amos in straight sets, 6-4, 6-4.
The Lions are back in action at the Dick Savitt Tennis Center Saturday, Feb. 15 against Maryland at 1 p.m.
No. 51 Columbia 4, No 32 Yale 1
1. No 24 BIanca Sanon/ Kanika Vaidya (COL) def. Madeleine Hamilton/ Ree Ree Li (YALE) 6-2
2. No. 20 Crystal Leung/Tina Jiang (COL) def. Hanna Yu/ Sherry Li (YALE) 7-6 (8-6)
3. Courtney Amos/ Annie Sullivan (YALE) def. Tiana Takenaga/ Ioana Alecsiu (COL) 6-1
1. No. 75 Kanika Vaidya (COL) vs. Madeleine Hamilton (YALE) 7-6 (7-0*), 6-0
2. Bianca Sanon (COL) vs. Annie Sullivan (YALE) 7-6 (7-4*), 5-6, unfinished
3. Tina Jiang (COL) def. Sherry Li (YALE) 6-4, 6-4
4. Crystal Leung (COL) vs. Ree Ree Li (YALE) 5-7, 2-1, unfinished
5. Hanna Yu (YALE) def. Tiana Takenaga (COL) 6-3, 6-2
6. Ioana Alecsiu (COL) vs. Courtney Amos (YALE) 6-4, 6-4