Bison slip past Wilkes in NCAA Tournament, 5-4

MIDDLEBURY, Vt. – The Nichols College women's tennis team won its NCAA Tournament First Round matchup with Wilkes University, 5-4, on Thursday afternoon at the Proctor Tennis Courts on the campus of Middlebury College.
 
The Bison improve to 20-2 overall and advance to the Second Round for the second-straight season, matching up with #18 Skidmore, who defeated Yeshiva 5-0 in one of the other First Round matchups, tomorrow morning at 8:30 a.m. Wilkes wraps up its season at 15-4 overall.
 
Nichols took a 2-1 lead in doubles play as senior Alanna Judd and sophomore Lindsey Kaplan grabbed the first point of the day with an 8-2 win at No. 3 doubles over junior Erin Volutza and senior Brittany Stanton. Sophomores Amarie Settiwongse and Isabelle Leonardifollowed with an 8-6 win at No. 1 doubles over junior Jordan Vasarkovy and sophomore Dana Saliyev.
 
The Colonels got their lone point of doubles at the No. 2 position as senior Ashley Dallaire and sophomore Megan Nathanson fell to sophomore Francesca Varela-Seri and sophomore Laura Zielinski, 9-8 (7-5).
 
Kaplan opened singles play with a 6-2, 6-2 win over freshman Dagney Markle at No. 6 singles to put the Bison in front 3-1, but the Colonels trimmed the deficit to 3-2 as Zielinski defeated freshman Juliana Herrera, 6-2, 6-4. Varela-Seri pulled Wilkes even in the match with a 6-2, 6-4 victory at No. 2 singles over Judd.
 
Nathanson took the lead back for the Bison with a 6-4, 6-3 win at No. 3 singles over Saliyev, but the Colonels answered with Volutza's 3-6, 7-5, 6-1 win at No. 4 singles over Leonardi to knot the match at 4-4.
 
The decision came down to No. 1 singles where Amarie Settiwongse won the first set, 6-2, before her opponent Jordan Vasarkovy responded with a 6-4 win in the second set. The third set went to the sophomore Settiwongse as she pulled out the victory with a 6-4 win in the third set to help the Bison advance.
 
Coach's Quote
"Today was one of the finest examples of a team win in recent memory. A lot of people stand out: Meg Nathanson bouncing back from a tough loss in doubles was huge. Lindsey Kaplan getting two points for us was certainly very impressive. The story of the day was Amie gutting out a tough three setter tied 4-4. She was cramping badly at the end, but had just enough to move us into the Second Round. I couldn't be prouder of the way this team competed. Hats off to Wilkes as well, they competed super hard in what was a well fought match with excellent sportsmanship on both sides." – Head Coach Paul Brower
 
All-Time Series
This was the first meeting between the two teams.