Feb. 15, 2004
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EVANSTON, Ill.--The Wildcats easily swept the doubles matches and did not let up from there.
Playing perennial power Harvard, which is ranked No. 11, Northwestern's seventh-ranked women's tennis team had relatively little trouble in winning 5-2, its sixth victory over a ranked team this season.
"I was surprised by how easy the doubles match were, but I did not think the singles matches were all that easy," said head coach Claire Pollard. "Harvard's strength is at the top of its lineup, and the fact that we won the quickest at Nos. 1 and 2 (singles) showed a great match on our part."
NU (7-1) picked up the doubles point from a dominating, collective effort. First, Alexis Prousis (Lake Forest, Ill./Lake Forest) and Jamie Peisel (Savannah, Ga./Savannah) had an 8-1 rout at No. 2, followed by top-ranked Cristelle Grier (Surrey, England/Putney) and Jessica Rush (Dallas, Texas/The Hockaday School) with an 8-2 win at No. 1. Moments later, Andrea Yung (San Marino, Calif./San Marino) and Ruth Barnes (Cambridge, England/Hills Road Sixth Form College) closed out doubles with an 8-0 effort at No. 3.
The first three points in singles were much of the same for the Wildcats. Fourth-ranked Grier crushed No. 25 Courtney Bregman 6-0, 6-2 at No. 1, and on the adjacent court, No. 36 Rush whipped Susanna Lingman 6-4, 6-0 at No. 2. Both Grier and Rush earned their team-leading 18th wins.
The clinching match came at No. 6, where Barnes pounced on Ashley Hyotte 6-3, 6-2. Prousis ended the night by outlasting Preethi Mukundan 3-6, 6-2, 6-4 at No. 4.
"This is the kind of competition we enjoy and thrive on," said Pollard. "As we continue to get better as a program, it becomes easier to get motivated to play (these top teams)."
The 'Cats hit the road for their next match, playing Duke at noon on Feb. 21 in Durham, N.C.