#4 Women’s Tennis Begins Spring With Road Win at #7 Tufts

Christina Puccinelli clinched the match with a three-set win at No. 2 singles on Saturday.
Christina Puccinelli clinched the match with a three-set win at No. 2 singles on Saturday.

The fourth-ranked Middlebury women's tennis team opened up its spring season with a 6-3 road NESCAC victory Saturday at No. 7 Tufts in the Hirsch Tennis Center. The Panthers return to action next Saturday with a pair of home matches against Colby at 1:00 p.m., followed by a 5:00 p.m. match with St. Lawrence.

Middlebury started things by earning two of the three points during doubles play. The No. 2 tandem of Catherine Blazye and Maddi Stow posted an 8-3 victory over Patricia Obeid and Katherine Wiley. The Jumbo team of Otilia Popa and Mina Karamercan evened the score at 1-1 with an 8-4 win in the top flight against Katherine Hughes and Skylar Schossberger. Middlebury's No. 3 pair of Christina Puccinelli and Heather Boehm gave the Panthers a 2-1 lead after doubles with a narrow 9-7 triumph over Lauren Louks and Kiara Rose.

In singles, Tufts knotted the score at 2-2 with a 7-6 (4), 6-4 victory by Obeid over Hughes in the top spot. The Panthers rattled off three-straight wins to clinch the match. Boehm tallied a 6-2, 6-4 win over Zoe Miller at No. 4, while Blazye fought back from a set down for a 0-6, 6-4, 6-3 victory against Karamercan in the third position. Puccinelli scored the team's fifth point via a hard-fought 4-6, 7-6 (5), 6-3 win against Louks at No. 2.

The Jumbos tallied their point with a 6-2, 6-2 win from Wiley over Schossberger in the fifth spot of the lineup. Stow completed the scoring, battling back after dropping the opening set for a 3-6, 6-3, 10-8 triumph over Rose at No. 6.