ETSU wins fifth A-Sun regular season title since joining the league in 2005-06
MACON, Ga. (April 2, 2011) - After defeating Kennesaw State yesterday to earn at least a share of the A-Sun title, the ETSU women's tennis team defeated Mercer, 6-1, Saturday afternoon to clinch the A-Sun regular season title outright. The Bucs have now won three straight A-Sun regular season titles and five since joining the A-Sun in 2005-06.
"It is just extremely satisfying to win an A-Sun regular season championship," said ETSU Director of Tennis Yaser Zaatini. "Obviously all of this would not be possible without the work of coach Travis Sandlant and coach Tara Byrne. They have taken ownership of this program and they have really worked together to make it what it is."
With the victory, the Bucs move to 12-6 overall and 9-1 in A-Sun play. Meanwhile, Mercer falls to 4-13 overall and 1-8 in conference play.
"Overall the performance today against Mercer, even though we were victorious, wasn't what my expectations are for this team," added Zaatini. "Obviously a victory is a victory, yet you want to carry momentum and continue what we are building on. I don't think we played extremely well today, yet the girls managed to pull it off but I can assure you that teams are going to hunt us down if we start slacking off and not playing our best tennis. Our best tennis is barely enough when we play it so we need to get it together if we want a good showing in the tournament."
The Bucs made a statement early after cruising through doubles play as they won all three matches to take the 1-0 lead.
ETSU stayed in control in singles play as well after senior Tara Sheets (Gate City, Va.) earned a quick 6-1, 6-3 win over Sarah Hanna at the No. 6 position. Just moments later, the Bucs went up 3-0 after Marine Wieliczko (Rouen, France) defeated Aurelie de Montjou, 6-3, 6-2, at the No. 3 position.
The Bucs wrapped up the match and the conference title at the No. 2 position as junior Paula Jaime (Madrid, Spain) knocked off Amalia Bugge, 6-4, 6-0.
ETSU also got wins from the No. 5 and No. 1 positions on the afternoon. Freshman Giulia Andreazza (Balneario Camboriu, Brazil) defeated Amanda Bertani, 6-0, 6-4, at the No. 5 spot, while senior Kelly Holtzhausen (Johannesburg, South Africa) got past Jennifer Lada, 6-4, 6-2.
"It has been a great effort so far for the ladies," said ETSU Assistant Coach Travis Sandlant. "They have worked hard and adapted to longer and tougher practices. To come away with the regular conference championship is well deserved by all the players. Every player has played a part in the victory this year. We know as a team that only half the job is done and we must perform and be hungry to win in a couple of weeks at the conference tournament."
With its win Saturday, ETSU locked up the top seed in the upcoming A-Sun Tournament later this month.
The Bucs will close out the regular season at home against UNC Asheville on Wednesday afternoon. First serve will begin at 2 p.m.
For more information on ETSU women's tennis please go to ETSUBucs.com and click on the women's tennis link. Also, be sure to follow ETSU Athletics on Facebook and Twitter.
ETSU 6, Mercer 1
1. Kelly Holtzhausen (ETSU) def. Jennifer Lada (Mercer) 6-4, 6-2
2. Paula Jaime (ETSU) def. Amalia Bugge (Mercer) 6-4, 6-0
3. Marine Wieliczko (ETSU) def. Aurelie de Montjou (Mercer) 6-3, 6-2
4. Lucie Payrat (Mercer) def. Karina Kedzo (ETSU) 6-2, 7-6 (7-5)
5. Giulia Andreazza (ETSU) def. Amanda Bertani (Mercer) 6-0, 6-4
6. Tara Sheets (ETSU) def. Sarah Hanna (Mercer) 6-1, 6-3
1. Karina Kedzo/Paula Jamie (ETSU) def. Jennifer Lada/Aurelie de Montjou (Mercer) 8-4
2. Marine Wieliczko/Kelly Holtzhausen (ETSU) def. Amalia Bugge/Lucie Payrat (Mercer) 8-1
3. Diana Navrostska/Tara Sheets (ETSU) def. Sarah Hanna/Amanda Bertani (Mercer) 8-1
East Tennessee State 12-6, 9-1 A-Sun
Mercer 4-13, 1-8 A-Sun
Order of Finish:
Singles: 6, 3, 2, 5, 1, 4
Doubles: 3, 2, 1