DeLAND, Fla. (April 15, 2011) - After earning the early doubles point, the ETSU women's tennis team picked up three straight set singles victories to defeat Stetson, 4-1, Friday morning in the semifinals of the Atlantic Sun Tournament at the Mandy Stoll Tennis Center on the Stetson University campus.
ETSU (14-6) won its eighth consecutive match to march into the A-Sun Tournament final for the sixth straight season. The Bucs will play the winner of the UNF-Campbell match tomorrow in the finals at 10 a.m.
"It was a good fight that the girls put up today," said ETSU Director of Tennis Yaser Zaatini. "Everybody came in motivated and we came out firing. We worked extremely hard and there was a lot of good competition out there, because Stetson is obviously a very solid team. Everybody competed hard and that is what we ask of our kids all the time."
The Bucs opened the match strong just like they did against the Hatters during the regular season by winning the doubles point. The Stetson duo of Lindsey Cable and Shannon Gunning picked up the first doubles victory of the day by knocking off Tara Sheets (Gate City, Va.) and Andra Voinea (Brasov, Romania), 8-4, at the No. 3 position. The Bucs evened the match up after Kelly Holtzhausen (Johannesburg, South Africa) and Marine Wieliczko (Rouen, France) defeated MayaBlue Stauffer-MacDowell and Sierra Sullivan, 8-6, at the No. 2 position.
ETSU clinched the doubles point when Paula Jaime (Madrid, Spain) and Karina Kedzo (Puerto Ordaz, Venezuela) got past Carolina de los Santos and Unnati Purushotham, 8-4, at the No. 1 position. Jaime and Kedzo have now won 11 doubles matches in a row.
The singles portion of the match looked like it may come down to the wire early as many of the matches were up in the air. Wieliczko and Kedzo started out strong for the Bucs in their opening sets, but the Bucs were down in each of the other matches.
Wieliczko earned the first singles win for the Bucs as she was able to cruise past Gunning at the No. 3 position, 6-2, 6-1, to put the Bucs up 2-0 in the match.
Perhaps the biggest momentum shift of the day came at the No. 5 position as Stauffer-MacDowell held an early lead on ETSU's Diana Navrostska (Lviv, Ukraine). However, Navrostska came from behind in the opening set to take the frame, 7-5. Then, with all of the momentum on her side, she took set two, 6-2, putting the Bucs up 3-0. Navrostska has now won six consecutive singles matches.
Just moments later, the Bucs clinched the victory as Kedzo earned the straight set victory over Sullivan, 6-2, 6-3. Kedzo, a second-team all-conference performer, earned her 13th singles victory of the season.
Stetson closes out the season with a 17-6 overall record.
The Bucs will now await the winner of the UNF-Campbell match that will take place this afternoon. ETSU defeated Campbell on the road during the regular season, 5-2, but were defeated by UNF, 5-2, on the road. Live stats and live video of the championship match will be available at GoHatters.com.
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 4, Stetson 1
Apr 15, 2011 at DeLand, Fla. (Mandy Stoll Tennis Center)
1. Carolina D.L. Santos (STET) def. Kelly Holtzhausen (ETSU) 6-2, 6-4
2. Unnati Purushotham (STET) vs. Paula Jaime (ETSU) 5-7, 3-4, unfinished
3. Marine Wieliczko (ETSU) def. Shannon Gunning (STET) 6-2, 6-1
4. Karina Kedzo (ETSU) def. Sierra Sullivan (STET) 6-2, 6-3
5. Diana Navrostska (ETSU) def. MB StaufferMacDowell (STET) 7-5, 6-2
6. Lindsey Cable (STET) vs. Andra Voinea (ETSU) 7-6, 5-2, unfinished
1. Paula Jaime/Karina Kedzo (ETSU) def. Carolina D.L. Santos/Unnati Purushotham (STET) 8-4
2. Kelly Holtzhausen/Marine Wieliczko (ETSU) def. MB StaufferMacDowell/Sierra Sullivan (STET) 8-6
3. Lindsey Cable/Shannon Gunning (STET) def. Tara Sheets/Andra Voinea (ETSU) 8-4
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2,1); Singles (3,5,1,4)