After a strong showing from five members of the women's tennis team this past weekend at the Intercollegiate Tennis Association's (ITA) New England Championship, the Polar Bears will attempt to maintain the momentum as they travel to the West Point Invitational today.

The regional ITA championships are highly competitive, select tournaments for only a limited number of participants from each college or university. Led by captain Kellen Alberstone '13, the Polar Bears proved that they could compete with some of the best tennis players in New England.

Alberstone took control of her opening round match against Connecticut College's Becca Heupel at the onset and never looked back, cruising to a 6-0, 6-2 straight-set victory. While the score appears to show an easy match for Alberstone, that was not the case.

"There would be matches where I thought I would roll over the girls," Alberstone said. "However, they fought until the very last point and would give me a tough match. You can't underestimate anyone."

She continued her strong play in the tournament's second round against MIT's Julia Hsu. While Hsu proved to be a tougher opponent than Heupel, Alberstone also dispatched of Hsu in straight sets 6-4, 6-2, before falling in the Round of 16 to Middlebury's Leah Kepping 6-0, 7-6 (4).

"The quality of play was extremely high, and there were absolutely no easy matches," Alberstone said. "I am pleased with my result, although each tournament I go into, I always want to win it."

In addition to the solid performance of Alberstone, first years Emma Lewis and Kate Winningham were both victorious in their collegiate debuts.

Lewis bounced Maile Macleod of Simmons College handily in straight sets 6-2, 6-0 before bowing out in a tough match to Caroline Capute of Williams College 6-4, 7-6 (1). Winningham defeated Janice Lam of Tufts 6-0, 6-3 before falling to tournament semifinalist Laura Danzig of Amherst in a hard fought match 7-6(4), 7-5.

Another Polar Bear who opened up this past weekend was Chantalle Lavertu '13. Although Lavertu won her first set 6-3 against Nicole Reich of Williams, she lost the next two sets 6-2, 10-8 to fall in the first round.

The ITA New England Championship also featured a doubles bracket that included two pairs representing Bowdoin.

The duo of Alberstone and Lewis secured a challenging first round victory 9-7 over Middlebury's Dorrie Paradies and Sally Wilkey prior to being edged 9-8 (3) by Williams' Reich and Alotta for the victory. The pair of Lavertu and captain Hannah Hoerner '12 fell in the opening round 8-4 to Williams' Caroline Capute and Lucy Marchese.

"The fall tournaments give us an opportunity to find out what we need to work on during our offseason in preparation for our spring season when we play all of our dual matches," Alberstone said, "But obviously we want to do well in our fall tournaments."

After a solid first weekend of competition on the tennis courts, the women's tennis team is looking to continue to improve week in and week out at each fall tournament starting with the West Point Invitational hosted by Army this Friday.