ST. LOUIS -- Trailing 2-1 after doubles, No. 9-ranked Washington (Mo.) won four consecutive singles matches, including the clinching three-set win by senior Betsy Edershile at No. 5 singles, to advance to the NCAA Division III championship quarterfinal for the second year in a row and third time in school history with a 5-2 victory against No. 11 DePauw on Saturday afternoon at Tao Tennis Center.
"We knew DePauw would be really tough in doubles. We knew we needed to get one point and we got that point," ninth-year head coach Kelly Stahlhuth said. "We also knew we are tough in singles, and once we started playing, the team really believed in themselves. Every match was a battle, even the two-setters were like three-setters. I was thrilled to have the seniors on the court at the end because I knew one of them was going to do it. I told the team before the match that I was proud of them no matter what, they've already accomplished so much this season, and they delivered one more time."
Freshman Rebecca Ho and senior Corinne Rauck rallied from a 3-0 deficit to win 8-6 at No. 1 doubles as DePauw led 2-1 after doubles. The Bears won the first set in all six singles matches. Ho then rallied in the second set of her No. 2 singles match to win 7-2 in the tiebreak and even the match at 2-2. Sophomores Jamie Silverberg and Aly Coran battled to straight-set wins at first and third singles to give the Bears a 4-2 lead. DePauw won the second set at fourth, fifth and sixth singles, and took early leads in the third set on all three courts. After trailing 3-2, Edershile took a 4-3 lead, before serving for the match to win 6-4.
Washington U. improved to 19-5 on the season, the most wins for the program since finishing 20-5 in the 2003-04 season. DePauw ended its season with a 19-5 record. The Bears will face the winner of Sunday's Regional Championship in Atlanta between No. 1 Emory and No. 19 Washington & Lee in the NCAA quarterfinal round. The eight regional champions will vie for the NCAA Division III national championship May 19-21, at Biszantz Family Tennis Center in Claremont, California.