A Point From Defeat, Chan Rallies To Win NCAA Opener

May 26, 2010

NCAA Singles Bracket

ATHENS, Ga. - Junior Venise Chan was down and all but out in her NCAA Singles Championship opener, but mounted a huge comeback from match point down to claim the victory and reach the second round of NCAAs for the first time in her career. Sophomore Denise Dy lost a three-setter in her opener.

Chan was in about as deep a hole as possible, trailing 6-1, 5-1 to 28th-ranked Marta Lesniak of SMU. Having dropped her NCAA first round match her first two years as a Husky, Chan probably felt a sinking sense of déjà vu as the deficit grew larger, but if she was going to break through for her first NCAA tourney win, why not have it be a real challenge?

The All-Pac-10 First Teamer fought back with three-straight games to make it 5-4 in the second set before Lesniak earned a match point in the next game. Chan saved it and then continued to roll over her stunned opponent, taking the set 7-5. From there, with all the momentum behind her, Chan did not allow her opponent another glimmer of hope, dominating the final set, 6-0.

All told, after losing 11 of the first 13 games, Chan won 11 in a row to complete the 1-6, 7-5, 6-0 victory and move on in the tourney. She will now face USC's 31st-ranked Alison Ramos in the second round for a spot in the round of 16.

'I was down and I didn't know what was going on, I was missing so many balls,' said Chan. 'I was thinking about the last two years and how I didn't play well. But I started getting a little more consistent and confident. I just had to focus and keep more balls in. After the second set there was a 10 minute heat break which I didn't want because the sun wasn't out and I thought it would stop my momentum but I was able to keep it going.'

Dy, like Chan seeded in the No. 9-16 range, had the opposite start to Chan but unfortunately the opposite result as well. Facing Boise State's 49th-ranked Pichittra Thongdach, Dy took the first set with ease, 6-2. But from there Thongdach got on a roll and Dy could not counter, as the Bronco came back with 6-1 wins in both the second and third sets.

Chan's win is the first for the Huskies in the NCAA tourney since 2004 when Dea Sumantri and Erin Hoe both won their first round matches.

Didn't kknow what was going on more consistent and confidence. Focus kept more balls in.

Tomorrow, Dy will compete in the first round of the Doubles Championship with senior Joyce Ardies.

Washington Women's Tennis
NCAA Singles Championships
Athens, Ga. - University of Georgia
Dan Magill Tennis Complex

First Round
(9-16) Venise Chan (UW) def. Marta Lesniak (SMU), 1-6, 7-5, 6-0
Pichittra Thongdach (BSU) def. (9-16) Denise Dy (UW), 2-6, 6-1, 6-1