MERION STATION, Pa. – The Bucknell women’s tennis team had four players reach the semifinals in singles play Saturday on day two of three at the Saint Joseph’s Invitational. Sophomore Mishi Papich and freshman Paige Leavy still have hopes of an individual title in Flight 3, while sophomore Danielle Gannon and freshman Jill Auteri are still in contention for gold in Flight 4.
Leavy and Auteri have been especially impressive to start their collegiate careers. Both players won singles titles at the Bucknell Fall Invite in the season-opening weekend, and both remained unbeaten after Saturday at Saint Joseph’s. Leavy recorded two wins to move to 6-0, while Auteri won her lone match to improve to 4-0.
Papich is in the top half of the Flight 3 draw, where she posted wins over George Washington’s Allison Hansen and Drexel’s Anisiya Simpson. She had to erase a one-set deficit against Hansen after falling 3-6 in the first, and did so with 6-3, 10-8 victories in the next two. The victory over Simpson came in straight sets, 6-3, 7-5. Papich will play Drexel’s Clary Rodriguez Cruz in the semifinals.
On the other side of Flight 3, Leavy opened with a straight-sets (6-2, 6-2) win over Loyola’s Sydney Siembida. Her next match wasn’t nearly as easy, as she fell behind Saint Joseph’s Sarah Contrata with a 6-1 loss in the first set, but bounced back with 7-5 and 10-3 victories. Leavy will play George Washington’s Kamilla Beisenova in the semifinals.
Neither Gannon nor Auteri had any problems in their combined three matches in Flight 4. Gannon rolled to a 6-0, 6-0 victory over Lafayette’s Haley Matthes in the first round, and a 6-1, 6-2 triumph over Villanova’s Zoe Speaker in the quarterfinals. Auteri notched a 6-1, 6-1 win over Drexel’s Jennifer White.
In the semifinals, Gannon will take on Drexel’s Fiorella Coria, and Auteri will play Villanova’s Sydney King.
Senior Michele Urbinati had a notable win in Flight 1 singles. She dropped her opening match, but bounced back with a 6-2, 6-4 win over Villanova’s top player, Kaylan Rotman. Rotman edged Urbinati in three sets two weeks ago at the Bucknell Fall Invite.
Auteri and Gannon have won a pair of matches to advance to the finals of the consolation draw of Flight 2 doubles. They will play Loyola’s Ania Krawiec and Siembida.