SWARTHMORE, Pa. – The Haverford College women's tennis team is headed to the Centennial Conference Championship after the third-seeded Fords (13-3) upended second-seeded Swarthmore (10-8) by a 5-1 score in the conference semifinals on Saturday. Haverford reversed a 6-3 defeat during the regular season to reach the title match. The Garnet entered the match as the No. 8 team in the ITA's Atlantic South Region, while Haverford was No. 11 in the latest rankings release.
With its win in the Centennial Conference semifinals, Haverford will now advance to Sunday's Centennial Conference Championship match at top-seeded Johns Hopkins. That match, which will decide the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament, will get underway at 11 a.m. The Fords have now advanced to the Centennial Conference Championship match during each season where they entered the postseason as the No. 3 seed.
Swarthmore won all three doubles matches during the regular season when these teams met. The Fords completely turned the tables on Saturday with a sweep of their own. Julia Gan and Greta Koch got the day started with an 8-5 win in the top doubles match. Winning their first match together since moving to the top doubles spot, Haverford's No. 1 duo improved to 9-4 together this season.
At No. 3 doubles, the pairing of Clara Farrehi and Natalie Williams doubled up the Garnet by an 8-4 score. That duo is now 4-0 together this spring. Haverford made it a clean sweep with a hard-fought 8-6 win at No. 2 doubles. The pairing of Emily Shutman and Jane Bary won its 10th match together and now has four victories in a row.
Swarthmore got its first point of the day at No. 5 singles, but it would not be long until the Fords came away with two more singles victories. Haverford got those wins via a pair of repeat victories over the Garnet from the regular season from Julia Gan and Jane Bary. Bary won her 13th straight match with a 6-2, 6-2 victory at No. 2 singles. Gan was a 6-2, 6-4 winner at the No. 1 singles spot. The regionally-ranked Ford now has 10 wins on the season.
Even in the unfinished matches, Haverford had strong showings across the board. Emily Shutman was up a set after a 6-1 win to start her day. She was locked in a 2-2 battle during her second set when the match reached decision. Sam Berg was two games away from another win for the Fords as she went up 1-0 via a 7-5 first set victory. She was leading 4-3 during the second. Greta Koch was also looking to reverse an earlier defeat as she won the opening set by a 6-4 score before falling in the second.