Syracuse Visits Women's Tennis Saturday to Conclude Non-Conference Slate

Hai-Li Kong is 6-2 this spring (OAC). 

Scene Setter
Harvard plays its final non-conference regular season match of 2013 Saturday when Syracuse makes the trek from upstate New York to take on the Crimson at 12 p.m. Saturday.

Last Time Out
Harvard earned its fourth straight victory inside the Murr Center, knocking off Fairleigh Dickinson, 7-0, Saturday. Sylvia Li and Amanda Lin got the Crimson started with an 8-0 triumph at No. 3 doubles over Dina Guzairova and Manuela Leme, while Kristin Norton and Hideko Tachibana knocked off FDU's top tandem of Egnoza Morina and Celine Maier, 8-2, to lock up the doubles point. In singles action, the Crimson dominated, winning five of the six matches in straight sets. Hannah Morrill blanked Nicole Chis, 6-0, 6-0, at No. 5, while Crystal Yen topped Manuela Leme, 6-2, 6-0, in the sixth position. In the only match to go three sets, No. 1 Hideko Tachibana outlasted Anna Rapoport, 6-2, 4-6, 10-7, to earn the Crimson's fourth shutout of the season.

Related Article: Women's Tennis Continues Roll with 7-0 Win Against Fairleigh Dickinson

About Harvard

The Crimson has won five of its last six matches and four straight inside the confines of the Murr Center Tennis Courts to sit at 7-4 with its non-conference slate about to draw to a close. Amanda Lin tops the team with an 8-1 mark in singles play, including a current seven-match win streak. Hideko Tachibana, who has won five of her last six singles contests, and Amy He are tied for second on the team with seven victories each, and Hai-Li Kong has also earned six wins this spring. In dual matches, Harvard is 43-20 to raise its 2012-13 overall mark to 96-49.

Kristin Norton and Tachibana have rattled off five consecutive victories at No. 1 doubles since being paired up this spring after going 2-2 in the fall to help the Crimson win the point in five straight contests. Sylvia Li and Lin top the team with a 7-1 record this spring and a 14-2 mark on the year. The other doubles teams have fluctuated this spring with eight other tandems splitting time. Harvard is 20-10 in the dual season in doubles matches and 40-23 this year.

Zeroing In
The Crimson has posted four shutouts this season to match its highest total since 2010 when the team also blanked the opposition four times. The Crimson also recorded its first back-to-back shutouts, beating Binghamton and NJIT, for the first time since March 30 and April 2, 2010 when Harvard defeated Fresno State and Columbia, 7-0, in consecutive matches. The program record for shutouts in a season is nine, which came in 1988.

About Syracuse (Team Page)
After dropping its first four matches of the season, Syracuse has won eight of its last 10 contests, including three straight, heading into the weekend. During the Orange's three-game win streak, the blue and orange has not allowed a point, defeating Seton Hall, Providence and Army, 7-0,  in the past week. Prior to taking on Harvard, the Orange will face Big East foe UConn.

Maddie Kobelt tops the team with a 10-5 mark, going 8-1 at the No. 2 position. Top singles player Amanda Rodgers is 9-4 with four of those wins coming at No. 1, while Jimena Wu is 5-2 at No. 3 and 6-6 overall. Kobelt and Brittany Lashway form the top doubles tandem, going 5-0 at No. 1. Rodgers and Komal Safdar also have a perfect 8-0 mark, playing six of those matches at the second position.  The Orange is 8-1 when it wins the doubles point, but it is 0-5 when losing the point.

Series History vs. the Orange
Harvard leads the all-time series 9-4, winning the first seven pairings without allowing a point. In last year's meeting, the Orange prevailed 4-3, which was the first time the schools had met since Harvard won 6-3 in October 1999.

Up Next
Harvard begins Ivy League play with a road trip to Columbia and Cornell April 5 and 6.