WALTHAM, Mass. — Off to an 8-1 start, the Brandeis University women's tennis team is ranked #18 in the nation in Division III according to the Intercollegiate Tennis Association, the highest ranking in program history.
The Judges, who began the season ranked 28th nationally by the ITA, have won their last six matches, including a 5-4 win over then-19th-ranked University of Redlands on February 25 in California and a 6-3 victory over then-17th-ranked MIT on March 4 in Cambridge.
Under 12th-year head coach Ben Lamanna, the Brandeis women previously reached the top 20 in 2012, peaking at No. 19.
The Judges are led by rookie Sabrina Ross Neergaard of Port Orchard, Washington, who plays at No. 1 singles and doubles. She is 7-2 in dual matches in singles and 6-3 in doubles along with sophomore partner Olivia Leavitt of Falmouth, Maine. Leavitt is 6-2 overall in singles, with most of her matches played at No. 4.
Junior Haley Cohen of Cherry Hill, New Jersey, is 6-3 at No. 2 singles, while posting three wins with a couple of different partners at No. 2 doubles.
Sophomore Keren Khromchenko of Manalapan, New Jersey is 5-2 at No. 3 singles and 6-3 at No. 3 doubles. Sophomore Michele Lehat of Great Neck, New York, is also 5-2 in singles play, splitting time at No. 5, where she is 3-1, and No. 6, where she is 2-1. Lehat also teams with Khromchenko at No. 3 doubles.
Also contributing for the Judges this season have been sophomore Sophia He of Poughkeepsie, New York, who was 3-2 on the team's trip to California before missing time with an injury; sophomore Ariana Ishaq of Houston, Texas, who has played at No. 5 and No. 6 singles; and rookie Sarah Greisman of Weston, Connecticut, who has posted one win at No. 6 singles.
Brandeis' remaining schedule contains four more ranked opponents, including a match on Saturday against No. 7 Middlebury and one the following weekend against No. 12 Tufts. The Judges also close the season at the University Athletic Association (UAA) tournament, a slate that will include six of the top 20 teams in Division III and seven of the top 35.
For the full March 16 ITA Division III National Rankings, visit http://www.itatennis.com/ResultsAndRankings/Rankings/Oracle_ITA_Division_III_Women_s_Collegiate_Tennis_Rankings/Oracle_ITA_Division_III_Women_s_National_Team_Ranking_-_March_16.htm.