Tennis team extends winning streak to seven

Brian Miller

Tuesday afternoon didn’t present the best weather one could hope for when playing tennis, as it was raining outside UW-Stout. However, the UW-Eau Claire women’s tennis team was able to generate some heat inside the courts as they beat the Blue Devils 6-3, making this their seventh straight victory.

“It was pouring outside,” said junior Gina Dahl. “We played on not real courts, made of rubber material, so it changes the ball speed, it goes faster.”

Freshman Megan Born agreed and said the courts were sort of dark so it was hard to see the ball.

“We played really good considering the conditions,” she said.

Coach Craig Monson said that’s one of the advantages everybody has at an indoors home court.

“Every court is different,” Monson said. “We adjusted well so we could win.”

And so they did. In singles Born came in second place with a 6-1, 6-4 victory, followed by junior Brenna McCormick who won 6-2, 7-5. The fourth and sixth spot belonged to juniors Erin Welch and Courtney Lynne with matches of 6-1, 6-0 and 6-1, 6-3, respectively.

In doubles the Blugolds took second and third place. The pair of Welch and McCormick had an 8-1 victory, followed by the duet of freshmen of Jackie Gillespie and Emily Hiebl with a 9-7 win.

Dahl and Lynne lost 8-2 in doubles. Dahl said the team is really successful so far.

“(Stout’s) doubles came really strong,” Dahl said. “They made a lot of pointers, and we made a lot of errors, but it was fun playing doubles.”

Born said that she was very happy about the team’s performance.

“Even the girls that lost had very close matches, they played their hardest so I’m proud of them,” she said.

After Tuesday’s game the women improved their overall record to 8-3 and 4-1 in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC). The Blugolds will play at the WIAC Championship in Madison after they face UW-La Crosse in two weeks.

On Oct. 18 the Blugolds will play against the Eagles. This will be their last meet of the season before heading to the WIAC Championships were they hope to be in the top three, said Monson.

“We expect to finish in the top three of the conference,” Monson said. “If not first or second, our expectation is to be on the top 3.”

Dahl said that this year’s season went by pretty fast and now the team just has to focus on their second hardest match of the season, La Crosse.

“La Crosse is going to be a good competition,” Dahl said. “It’s going to be a challenging match for our team.”

Monson said the team has some time before the match so they are going to work on individualized practices.

“La Crosse has a better team that what they were last year,” he said.

Dahl agreed and said the team has been playing a lot of practice games and that in some cases they have the advantage of knowing how certain players play, from previews years that they remember, so they are going to incorporate that into their practice.

“La Crosse is the second hardest team to play,” she said. “We’ll pull it out, we’ve been playing good.”

Welch said even though it’s a while until their next match the team has to remember that they have to work hard and be able to prove themselves and work hard in practice.

“We want to be able to go to La Crosse and show them that we can play,” Welch said. “They’ve got a lot of new freshman that are tough, I know they hold the top spots in singles and they were a tough team last year. Especially being our last match of the season, we want to be able to win our last dual meet of the season.”