Tennis drops Senior Day match to Ball State
The Eastern Michigan University tennis team dropped its second straight match Saturday to Ball State University, 4-3 on Senior Day.
Senior Diana Davitaia talked about Eastern’s loss in her final home dual.
“It’s disappointing that we could not win as a team,” Davitaia said. “Hopefully next year, the Eagles will do better when they have their next home match.”
EMU (12-8, 5-2 Mid-American Conference) took the doubles point, but the Cardinals (14-8, 4-2 MAC) won four of the six singles matches.
The Eagles led off by taking the point in doubles play after winning two-of-three matches.
Davitaia and Maria Paula Ribero started the winning with an 8-3 win over Toni Ormond and Kristel Sanders in the No. 2 slot, before Mariya Toncheva and Daphne Friedrichs dropped the No. 3 match, 8-3, to Ayaka Terashi and Courtney Wild.
It came down to Nino Mebuke and Klara Supejova at No. 1 doubles to decide the point, and the duo came through with an 8-7 win over Courtney Earnest and Bethany Moore, giving Eastern a 1-0 lead after doubles play.
Ball State countered with four victories in singles play. Ribero fell first, 6-0, 6-1, at the No. 6 spot to Ashlyn Rang, knotting the dual up, 1-1.
The Cardinals took the lead, 2-1, when Wild cruised to a 6-2, 6-2 victory over Supejova on the No. 1 singles court.
BSU extended its lead to two when Terashi downed Friedrichs in straight sets, 6-3, 6-3.
However, things looked more promising after Toncheva dispatched Moore, 6-4, 6-4, at No. 4. Mebuke took her first set 6-0 and was up in set two before Sanders made a run at the No. 3 singles spot, taking a 7-6 decision in set two. Sanders was too much is set three, as Mebuke fell, 6-1, giving Ball State their fourth point, sealing the match.
Davitaia won her match at No. 2 by defeating Earnest in three sets, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 and talked about finishing strong after dropping the second.
“I wanted to win so much to give a point to my team and also I knew that it was my last game at home,” Davitaia said. “In the third set, I was very focused for every point and game.”
EMU’s regular season concludes closes April 19, when it travels to DeKalb, Ill. for a 1 p.m. match with Northern Illinois University at the West Tennis Courts.
Follow Eugene Evans on Twitter @GenoSportsguy.