DARTMOUTH, Mass. – For the third time in four years, No. 3 seed UMass Dartmouth Women's Tennis defeated No. 6 seed UMass Boston in the Little East Conference Championship quarterfinals on Tuesday, securing a 5-1 decision and dropping just one doubles match.
Score: UMass Dartmouth 5, UMass Boston 1
Records: UMass Dartmouth (10-4) | UMass Boston (6-7)
How it Happened
The Corsairs and Beacons split the first two doubles matches, as UMass Dartmouth's Mollie McCaffrey (Taunton, Mass.) and Jaime Fastino (Rehoboth, Mass.) gathered an 8-4 with at No. 2 to start. UMass Boston then tied the score for the only time on the afternoon, when Kristy Garcia (Miami, Fla.) and Katie Gauthier (West Boylston, Mass.) defeated Corsairs Jenna Lahaie (Lakeville, Mass.) and Jillian Reichert (Marion, Mass.) handily, 8-3, at the top flight.
UMass Dartmouth would then pick up a crucial second point heading into singles from the No. 3 doubles duo of junior Samantha Rollings (Tiverton, R.I.) and freshman Natasha Shiku (North Grafton, Mass.), who edged UMass Boston's Kathleen Conroy (Quincy, Mass.) and Valeria Tueme (Easton, Mass.). After the Corsairs jumped out to a 4-1 lead to start, the Beacon pair then secured five of the next six games, going up 6-5. Rollings and Shiku would then win out to secure an 8-6 win.
Singles then saw the Corsairs collect three quick victories in the middle of the lineup to put away the match. Fastino prevailed for the seventh-straight time, downing Gauthier 6-2, 6-0, and McCaffrey dealt Conroy a 6-2, 6-2 defeat. Clinching the win was the team captain Rollings, who won her sixth-straight match with a 6-4, 6-2 decision over Meghan Erickson (Hubbardston, Mass.)
Inside the Numbers
- In doubles, McCaffrey and Fastino improved to 7-0 as a doubles pair over LEC competition this season. The duo has won six of their last seven.
- UMass Dartmouth has won all three playoff meetings and defeated UMass Boston for the 16th consecutive time. The Corsairs lead the all-time series, 16-1.
- UMass Dartmouth has reached the 10-win plateau for the second straight year, third time in four seasons and the 10th time in team history.
- The Corsairs were leading all three unfinished matches before the decision at No. 4. Lahaie held a 7-6 (7-5), 1-4 advantage over Garcia, Reichert was in a third set with Vicky Woytowicz (Springfield, Mass.) and UMass Dartmouth's Molina Oung (Bourne, Mass.) sat at 6-2, 4-4 with Shea.
UMass Dartmouth advances to the LEC Semifinals, and will travel to meet No. 2 seed Rhode Island College on Thursday. The Corsairs defeated the Anchorwomen en route to the league title last season, but dropped a 7-2 match to RIC earlier this fall.