Women's Tennis Claims 2nd NJCAA National Title in Program History

Women's Tennis Claims 2nd NJCAA National Title in Program History

The Lady Hawks took home their second national championship title in school history with a team point total of 46. Hillsborough earned runner-up to Tyler Junior College in both the 2021 and 2022 national championships. Their last national title came in 2008, where they defeated Tyler Junior College by only one point with a team total of 45.

The Lady Hawks picked up their first flight win from the No. 3 singles draw as Ita Habekovic outlasted Isid Hernandez (Cowley) in three sets to secure maximum points for Hillsborough. The sophomore for the Lady Hawks entered the draw as the No. 1 seeded player and only dropped 13 games over three matches prior to the final.

Continuing in singles, Alicia Gomez was another Lady Hawk to win her singles flight, taking down Yeva Kramarova (Tyler) in another three-set thriller at the No. 4 singles line. After dropping a tight 6-7 (1) first set to Kramarova, Gomez dug deep in the second set, winning 7-6 (5) to keep the match alive before she was ultimately able to close out the victory with a 6-1 win in the third set.

At the No. 6 line, Hillsborough added to their point total once again as the freshman, Paula Cabrer-Pericas, dominated throughout the tournament to help propel her team to victory. Over her four matches played, Cabrer-Pericas only lost 10 games, including a 6-0, 6-0 win in the Quarterfinals and a 6-0, 6-1 win in the Semifinals.

Across doubles play the Lady Hawks continued to tack on points, winning both the No. 1 and No. 2 doubles draws.

From the No. 1 doubles position, Esmee Andersen and Arina Gamretkaia came out as Champions. The Hillsborough duo were the top-seeded pairing at the NJCAA National Championships and didn’t lose a single set across all of their matches this past week in Tyler.

Following up on this success from the No. 2 doubles position, Yoana Dudova and Alicia Gomes fought their way through a difficult field of opponents to secure another first-place finish for the Lady Hawks.

After finishing runners-up to Tyler Junior College each of the past two seasons, this year marked the crescendo of years of hard work for head coach Sarah Lytle as her vision has come to fruition at the 2023 NJCAA National Championships. Lytle was also named the Coach of the Tournament for her impressive effort this past weekend and over the entirety of the season.