JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Oct. 1, 2004) - The East Tennessee State women's tennis team kicked off the 14th annual ETSU Fall Tennis Tournament today at the ETSU tennis courts. This is the first competition that the 2004-05 women's tennis team will see prior to the start of the regular season in January.
The day began with doubles action and all three ETSU teams advanced to the finals in their brackets. The returned pairing of junior Sylwia Ziolkowska (Warsaw, Poland) and Mariia Ilina (Kyiv, Ukraine) represented ETSU in the Doubles A bracket. They defeated Bolivar and Nevarez of Tusculum 8-5 in the first round and went on to beat Southern Conference rival Appalachian State's Kirven and Free 8-5.
Also competing in the Doubles A bracket are newcomers Sandie Knight (Adamstown, Australia) and Elena Volobueva (Barcelona, Spain) the pairing took their first wins over two SoCon schools. In their first match the pair faced Western Carolina's Hanson and Ptak and won 8-2. They then advanced to the finals with an 8-4 win over Blanton and Moody of Appalachian State.
The two ETSU teams will now face each other tomorrow morning at 8:00 a.m.
In the Doubles B Bracket the team of Jewel Aldea (Charleston, S.C.) and Gemma Halim (Jakarta, Indonesia) advance off of an 8-1 win over Gruber and Stroud of Mars Hill College and an 8-2 win over Feldman and Bloome of VI. They will face Western Carolina's Cotton and Harris in tomorrow's finals.
In singles action, Ziolkowska and Knight both won their matches in the Singles A bracket. Ziolkowska beat Salem Kirven of Appalachian State 6-4, 6-2 and will face Lindsey Free also of Appalachian State in her second round. Knight defeat Ptak of Western Carolina 6-1, 6-1 and will pair off against Kirven tomorrow.
Volobueva advanced with a 6-4, 6-0 win over VI's Vita Feldman and Ilina advanced in a 7-5, 6-1 win against Tricia Hanson of WCU in Singles B. In the C bracket Gemma Halim defeated Mercer College's Cheri Lomison by a score of 6-1, 6-0 while Jewel Aldea brought in another victory for ETSU in a 6-1, 6-2 win over Krissi Denton also of Mercer College.
"Overall the girls played well today and I hope they continue this success tomorrow," commented head coach Steve Brooks. "Everyone is getting good experience and that is what this tournament is all about."
Last year the women's team had a strong showing placing in the finals in seven of the eight flights and winning a total of five flights.
Tournament action will continue tomorrow beginning at 8:00 a.m. Admission to the tournament is free. To view the draw sheets, which will be updated at the conclusion of each day's play, please visit women's tennis main page at www.etsubucs.com.