Daily Egyptian

SIU women’s tennis swept in semifinals

By Matt Wells, @mattwells_DE

The No. 4 seeded Saluki women’s tennis team (16-10, 5-4) was swept 4-0 by No. 1 seeded Wichita State (23-3, 9-0) in the Missouri Valley Conference semifinals on Saturday at Evansville Tennis Center North in Evansville, Ind.

“We knew Wichita [State] would be tough,” coach Audra Anderson said.

Earlier in the season during the team’s record-setting 12-match win streak, Anderson said her team would have to play perfect to beat the Shockers, who were previously ranked No. 25 by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association.

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As of April 21, the ITA ranked Wichita State No. 33 in the nation.

On Saturday, the Dawgs lost every set against Wichita State. 

“They were on another level than us today,” Anderson said.

The No. 2 doubles match was the closest the Salukis would get to the Shockers. SIU sophomores Meagan Monaghan and Polina Dozortseva lost 5-4 to the MVC All-Conference No. 2 doubles team, junior Julia Schiller and freshman Gabriela Porubin.

The No. 1 doubles match of senior Natasha Tomishima and freshman Vitoria Beirao lost 8-1 to senior Lucia Kovalova and junior Rebecca Pedrazzi.

The No. 3 doubles match had the same result. Senior Ariadna Cairo Baza and freshman Yana Golovkina lost 8-1 to the Shockers’ duo, junior Aleksandra Trifunovic and sophomore Luca Pump.

In MVC play, the teams play until the fourth point is scored.

Senior Gisela Cairo Baza was the only SIU player to receive a point from the finished singles matches. She lost to freshman Giulia Guidetti 6-0, 6-1.

Golovkina lost in straight sets 6-0, 6-0 to Shockers junior Abby Stevens in the No. 4 singles match. Ariadna Cairo Baza lost to Trifunovic 6-0, 6-0 in the No. 5 singles match.

“The girls fought as hard as they could,” Anderson said. “They outpowered us.”

Cairo Baza said the Salukis refused to quit.

“We tried 100 percent, on every single court,” she said. “I’m really happy with them and with myself, of course.”

Tomishima said she is proud of how the team has played this season and she had a lot of fun at SIU.

“I got a chance to meet people I never knew,” she said.

Cairo Baza said despite her Saluki career ending, she will continue to play tennis.

“They’ve been a great example of hard work,” Anderson said of the seniors.

After beating the Salukis in the semifinals, Wichita State swept Drake 4-0 in the MVC Championship Sunday and received an automatic NCAA Tournament bid.

The Shockers will play in the Division I National Tournament beginning May 14 at the Hurd Tennis Center in Waco, Texas.

Matt Wells can be reacd at [email protected] or at 536-6311 ext. 269.

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