DeLAND, Fla. (March 13, 2010) - Battling both extremely high winds and Stetson, who was picked as the preseason favorite in the Atlantic Sun Conference, the ETSU women's tennis team picked up a key league victory Saturday as they defeated the Hatters 5-2 at the Mandy Stoll Tennis Center in DeLand, Fla.
With the win ETSU improved to 8-2 overall and 4-0 in A-Sun play, while Stetson dropped to an 8-3 mark with a 3-1 record in conference action.
"Stetson is a very good team so I'm very pleased with the ladies performances this afternoon," said head coach Steve Brooks. "The girls did a great job staying focused despite the wind conditions throughout the match. Everyone of our players have worked so hard getting ready for this weekend, so it was good to see us come away with two wins in Florida."
As doubles play got underway ETSU won two out of the three contests.
The Lady Bucs began their victories as senior Yevgeniya Stupak (Kyiv, Ukraine) and junior Kelly Holtzhausen (Johannesburg, South Africa) earned an 8-2 win over the 37th-ranked Hatter team of Valentina Galbarini and Carolina D.L. Santos. In fact it was the first loss of the season for Stetson at No. 1, with Galbarini and Santos' previous record being 9-0.
ETSU followed that up as the sophomores Paula Jamie (Madrid, Spain) and Karina Kedzo (Puerto Ordaz, Venezuela) picked up a strong 8-4 victory at No. 2.
Stetson's lone doubles win came as Breanna Atkinson and Katherine Nowicki outlasted junior Tara Sheets (Gate City, Va.) and sophomore Diana Navrostska (Kviv, Ukraine), 8-3.
"Our doubles play really set the tone for the rest of the match," said Brooks. "Kelly and Yevgeniya played great at No. 1 and Paula and Karina really did a good job closing out the point. Stetson is great traditionally in doubles, so after we lost in doubles during last seasons A-Sun title match our girls were really motivated from the start today."
As singles action started ETSU stayed in control as Stupak and Jaime, picked up straight set wins to give the Bucs a 3-0 lead.
With its backs against the rope Stetson then fought back at No. 4 as Unnati Purshotham dropped Kedzo 6-3, 6-2 and Galbrarini keep hope alive against Holtzhausen with a 6-4, 6-0 victory at the No. 2 position.
After the Hatters pulled within one point of ETSU junior Andra Voinea (Brasov, Romania) slammed the door shut on Stetson as she closed out Katherine Nowicki 4-6, 6-0, 6-1.
Closing out the final score was Diana Navrostska, who dropped Shannon Gunning 1-6, 7-6, 6-2.
ETSU returns to action with a 2 p.m. match Tuesday at William and Mary in Williamsburg, Va.
For more information on the ETSU women's tennis team please visit www.ETSUBucs.com.