The women’s tennis team began its spring season with a trip to California over Spring Break, returning to Brunswick with a 6-2 record. 

On the first day of play, the Polar Bears beat the Trinity University Tigers 7-2. The following day, Bowdoin beat Wesleyan by the same score. The Polar Bears entered singles play against the Cardinals after Kyra Silitch ’17 and Emma Chow ’15 won the No. 2 doubles match and Pilar Giffenig ’17 and Tiffany Cheng ’16 won the No. 3 doubles match. Cheng, Giffenig, Silitch, Samantha Stalder ’17 and Tess Trinka ’18 all won their singles matches to secure the victory. 

The Polar Bears recorded their third win against Washington University in St. Louis in a battle of top-ten teams. 

Trinka clinched the match at No. 3 singles to give Bowdoin the close 5-4 victory.
Bowdoin faced its first defeat of the season against Emory University, last year’s NCAA national champions. After falling behind 3-0 after doubles play, the Polar Bears got wins from Joulia Likhanskaia ’17, Trinka and Silitch, but it wasn’t enough to pull off the comeback. 

“The Emory loss was actually a pretty encouraging loss,” said Chow. “Even though the score was 6-3, there were a lot of three-set matches, and our doubles matches were tight. We definitely feel encouraged and are excited to hopefully play them again.”

In another top-ten matchup, the Polar Bears fell to Pomona-Pitzer 5-4. Giffenig and Cheng were the only Bowdoin doubles team to win its match. Likhanskaia, Cheng and Stalder each earned singles victories, but the comeback fell short in a three-set battle at No. 6 singles. 

“The Pomona loss was much more frustrating because we lost 5-4 in the third set,” Chow said. “Every year, we want to beat them, and we should beat them. We beat Wash U, who often beats them.”

The Polar Bears rebounded by beating Whitman College and the University of Redlands by scores of 9-0 and 7-2 respectively over the next two days. 

On its final day of play, Bowdoin beat Trinity 8-1 in a conference match. The Polar Bears jumped out to a 3-0 lead after doubles play. Likhanskaia, Cheng, Giffenig, Stalder, and Silitch all won in straight sets during singles play to give Bowdoin the win. 

The Polar Bears experimented with changing its doubles lineup, which contributed to the team’s strong finish in the trip. 

“Especially on Spring Break, it’s about experimenting with teams and trying them out,” Chow said. “Ideally, we’ll have our doubles lineup set when we get back. Those teams can just get better together, so by the time we get to May—the peak of our season—we’re at our best.”

Looking forward, the team hopes to continue its successful record and play competitively at the NESCAC and NCAA tournaments. 

Bowdoin will return to action at home against MIT on April 4.