The Gustavian Weekly

Gusties win three consecutive matches: Women’s Tennis undefeated in MIAC competitions | The Gustavian Weekly

By Luke Laurich - Staff Writer | March 8, 2019 | Sports & Fitness

Sophomore Ginger Valenine returns the ball during a singles match. The Gusties currently hold a record of 9-6 in all competitions this spring.

Sophomore Ginger Valenine returns the ball during a singles match. The Gusties currently hold a record of 9-6 in all competitions this spring.

Two weeks ago, the Gustavus Women’s Tennis team traveled to the west coast for a pair of matches against well established programs from Washington and Oregon.

To start out the weekend, the Gusties defeated Whitman College in a close match that resulted in a final score of 5-4.  Following the win against the host, the Gusties dropped a match 6-3 against Linfield College.

Head Coach Jon Carlson was confident the weekend was a good learning experience for the Gusties.

“It was a great weekend of intense competition,” Carlson said. “We learned a lot about ourselves individually and as a team. This weekend will only help us going forward.”

Head Coach Jon Carlson talks to his team to prepare them for an upcoming match.

Head Coach Jon Carlson talks to his team to prepare them for an upcoming match.

The women then traveled home and had over a week-long break before their next set of matches, which was this past Saturday.

The Gusties hosted three matches at the Swanson Tennis Center, taking three decisive victories on the weekend.

The action started Saturday morning against Morningside College from Sioux Falls, IA.

The singles matches got the women off to an early lead, as they didn’t drop a single set in any of the matches.

Sophomore Ginger Valentine led the charge on the top court in singles, defeating her opponent swiftly in two sets (6-1, 6-1).

The doubles matches ended in a similar fashion, with the women only dropping one game in the three matches played.

Seniors Lilly Hartman and Bri Hartmann took control of the top court in the doubles matches, defeating their opponents 8-1. Overall, the Gusties won the match with a decisive 9-0 victory.

The Gusties are 3-0 in conference play this spring and are looking for their record 30th MIAC title.

The Gusties are 3-0 in conference play this spring and are looking for their record 30th MIAC title.

The second match of the day was against fellow MIAC opponent Hamline University from St. Paul, MN.

The women were still on fire from the morning, defeating their conference opponent with a significant 9-0 victory.

In similar fashion to the first match of the day, the women went through all the singles matches without dropping a set.

Hartmann led the women’s singles on the top court, defeating her conference opponent in two sets (6-0, 6-2). Again, similar to the morning match, the doubles matches ended in a sweep.

Hartmann and Hartman retained their winning weekends on the top court of doubles, defeating their opponents by a score of 8-4.

Carlson was very proud of the team this weekend, especially against Hamline, a conference opponent.

“Hamline is as good as I ever remember and we had to play at a high level to get through that match,” Carlson said.

“I’m proud of the women and their efforts today. We are growing and improving both individually and as a team.”

The third and final match of the day was against Northwestern University from St. Paul, MN.

In the singles matches, the women won five of the six matches, with the sixth match falling just short in a neck and neck loss.

Senior Sheila Sullivan produced a pair of close victories, winning her the match on the top court (7-6, 7-5).

The women fell in one of the three doubles matches, with Juniors Kjorte Marra and Kailey Maroney winning a decisive match 7-6.

The overall match tested the Gusties’ depth as a team, as they utilized a variety of players which proved to be more than prepared to take home a conclusive 7-2 victory in the final match of the day.

Carlson was happy with his team’s performance and the involvement of a variety of players on the weekend.

“It was great to have so many members of the team involved in three good wins,” Carlson said.

The women will be back in action this upcoming Saturday, Feb. 9, as they host University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and Drake University, two very established teams that will be exciting matches to attend. The first match will begin at 9 a.m.

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