The Harvard women's tennis team has taken to dining together recently, and yesterday afternoon, the Crimson snacked on the Boston University Terriers.
Led by number-one singles player Elizabeth Evans, Harvard opened its 1982 fall campaign with an impressive 8-1 victory over BU.
Every member of the current Crimson team brought a national junior ranking with her to Harvard, and the squad is expected to improve over last season's 12-8, third-place finish in the East.
"I think we have the potential to be the best team in the East," Crimson Coach Don Usher said afterwards "we certainly have the best players."
Usher emphasized the team's "togetherness," a trait demonstrated at an unusually enthusiastic pre-season dinner Tuesday night.
"We wanted to talk about our goals for the year and get the team spirit going," Captain Debbie Kaufman said.
The team accomplished its first goal by consistently outsmarting BU. Almost to a player, the Crimson relied on crafty court strategy rather than power. Evans, for example, battled back for a three-set victory after dropping the first set to Leslie Sheehan, 6-7, when Sheehan bested her, 7-1, in the tie-breaker.
Relying on an aggressive net game and sharp passing shots, the Crimson's top player polished off the match, 6-2, 6-3. Earlier, the sophomore had teamed with Erica Schulman to defeat Sheehan and Bonnie Barber, 6-3, 6-4 at number-one doubles.
"I'm at the top of my game right now and it really couldn't have come at a better time," Evans said. "My net game was really on today; I just hope it continues."
Second seed Maria Pe used a consistent backcourt game to easily dispose of Joanna Sleeper, 6-2, 6-1. She and Kaufman took it to Bridget Hiller and Tara Dunne, 6-3, 6-1, at the number-two doubles position.
The day's only setback came at the hands of BU's Barber, who overpowered Schulman, 6-2, 7-6 (7-5). Using a crisp serve and a strong net game. Barber spoiled Schulman's late rally.
Kaufman easily disposed of Hiller, 6-1, 6-3, in the number four singles match. Freshman Ellen Berkman had just as easy a time, downing Dawn Olsen 6-2, 6-3.
Sophomore Tracy Kunichika had perhaps the quickest match of the day, putting away Jennifer Niceford, 6-0,6-0, in 25 minutes.
THE NOTEBOOK: After the match, the team went out again, Virginia and William and Many and the New England Championships, slated for October 29-30, and also to eat.,