ATHENS, Ga. (March 14, 2007) - ETSU women's tennis took on the #1 team in the country today University of Georgia. The Lady Bucs fought hard before falling to the Bulldogs 7-0, the toughest opponent the team has ever faced. The Lady Bucs now fall to 6-8 on the season, while the Bulldogs remain undefeated at 12-0.
In doubles play Yevgeniya Stupak (Kyiv, Ukraine) and Elena Volobueva (Barcelona, Spain) fell to the #38 ranked pair of Kelley Hyndman and Monika Dancevic in the No. 2 position 8-2, while the Bulldogs claimed the doubles point in the No. 3 position with Tara Byrne (Johnson City, Tenn.) and Vita Moskaliova (Minsk Belarus) falling to Natalie Frazier and Naoko Ueshima 8-2. The No. 1 doubles was a battle. Masha Ilina (Kyiv, Ukraine) and Olya Batsula (Minsk, Belarus) held game points in every one of the last five games, before eventually being defeated by #15 Yevette Hyndman and Darya Ivanov 8-5.
In singles action the battle continued. Masha Ilina was defeated by #50 Monika Dancevic 6-3, 6-1 in the No. 2 position. Vita Moskaliova began to find her form in the second set of her match, leading 4-3 before being overcome in the No. 6 position by Lara Fakhoury 6-1, 6-4. In the top position for the Lady Bucs, freshman Yevgeniya Stupak took on the #10 player in the country Natalie Frazier, playing well but falling 6-3, 6-1.
Sophomore Tara Byrne looked to be in control of her match in the fourth position, she dominated most of the points coming into the net, but her opponent Kelley Hyndman came up with the right shot whenever Byrne came in. Trying a different tactic, Byrne stayed back throughout the second set and started to make a comeback. Just not enough time left in the second set Byrne was defeated 6-3, 6-3.
Positive results for ETSU came in the No. 3 and 5 positions. Olya Batsula stretched her opponents to a 10-point tiebreaker for the third set. She took the first set from #60 Yvette Hyndman 6-2, before dropping the second set and the tiebreaker for a final score of 2-6, 6-2, 1-0 (7). Elena Volobueva also showed that she could match it with the best team in the country. She won her first set convincingly 6-2 and lead 3-2 in the second before rolling her ankle. She managed to stay in the match however, and had many opportunities to take the win, at one time being just two points away from winning the thrilling 10-point tiebreaker. In the end Volobueva was defeated by Lara Fakhoury 2-6, 6-2, 1-0 (8).
"Overall I am really proud of the girls, we played them really tough and it is not every day you get to play the best team in the country," said head coach Steve Brooks. "I thought we could get the doubles, there are just a couple of things here and there and it may have been different. The first half of the season is over now and we have done well. We have played eight ranked teams, and most of them have moved up in the rankings with five of them now in the top 20. I am looking forward now to the second half of the season and some more tough matches and good results."
The next match for the Lady Bucs will take place at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte,
No. 1- #10 Natalie Frazier (GU) def. Yevgeniya Stupak (ETSU) 6-3, 6-1
No. 4- Kelley Hyndman (GU) def. Tara Byrne (ETSU) 6-3, 6-3
No. 5- Adrienne Elsberry (GU) def. Elena Volobueva (ETSU) 2-6, 6-3, 1-0
No. 6- Lara Fakhoury (GU) def. Vita Moskaliova (ETSU) 6-1, 6-4
Finishing Order: 2, 6, *1, 4, 3, 5
No. 3- Frazier/Ueshima (GU) def. Byrne/Moskaliova (ETSU) 8-2
Finishing Order: 2, *3, 1