@FGCU_WTEN Ends Regular Season At Northern Kentucky And Lipscomb
Thursday, April 03, 2014 | by Sara Roberts (@Srob__)
FGCU women's tennis looks for a strong finish to the regular season this weekend (photo credit: Linwood Ferguson)
FGCU women's tennis looks for a strong finish to the regular season this weekend (photo credit: Linwood Ferguson)

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. – One win away from making the 2014 campaign the winningest in program history at the Division-I level, the FGCU women’s tennis team hits the road for its last dual matches of the regular season, facing Northern Kentucky, Friday at 11 a.m., and Lipscomb the following day at 10 a.m.

“The ladies are looking forward to this weekend and are determined to end the regular season on a high note,” head coach Courtney Vernon said. “Our intent is to stay focused on what we have been working on in practice and continue to grow as a team.”

Sitting at 11-7 overall, and 4-2 in Atlantic Sun play; the Eagles have already matched the program-best 11 wins from the 2013 season. With two dual matches and the Atlantic Sun Championship still left to play, the Green and Blue needs a victory in just one to notch the most successful season in FGCU’s D-I history. Since joining the A-Sun in 2007-08, the Eagles have averaged nine wins per season. During its seven years in D-II, FGCU averaged 11 wins, with the program’s most-successful campaign occurring in the spring of 2002 with a record of 16-7.

With four wins and a pair of losses, FGCU is listed third in the A-Sun standings, behind ETSU and North Florida at the top. After opening conference play with a 6-1 loss at ETSU, the Eagles rebounded in dominant fashion beating USC Upstate, 7-0, and Stetson, 5-2, before falling, 5-2, to UNF. Their last time out the Green and Blue saw a near-perfect weekend, soaring past Kennesaw state, 6-1, and shutting out Mercer, 7-0. Leading the team in doubles play, with a record of 11-5 (5-1 A-Sun), are partners Bettina Botha (Cape Town, South Africa/De Kuilen HS) and Johanna Sterkel (Schwetzingen, Germany/Carl-Theodor-Schule HS), while Candela Munoz’s (Alicante, Spain/Troy) mark of 14-2 (5-1 A-Sun) in singles play is the best in the conference.   

After dropping each of its four pervious A-Sun matchups, NKU (5-9 overall) enters the contest against FGCU looking to claim its first conference victory of the season. Earlier this spring the Norse were shutout, 7-0, by Kennesaw State and ETSU, and suffered defeats to Mercer and USC Upstate, falling 5-2 and 4-3, respectively. Meeting for just the second time, FGCU leads the all-time series, 1-0, against NKU, having won their first head-to-head matchup with a powerful 7-0 shutout.

Friday’s match against NKU will be shown live on A-Sun.TV, and will be available to watch free of charge here.

With an overall mark of 9-7 (2-2 A-Sun), Lipscomb welcomes FGCU looking to claim its first-ever win over the Eagles. The Bisons began conference play falling to Mercer, 4-2, but rebounded beating Kennesaw State, 5-2, and Upstate, 4-3, before losing to ETSU, 7-0. With the Eagles holding a 6-0 all-time advantage over the Bisons, the last meeting between the two saw a 5-2 win by FGCU, in what was the Eagles first conference match of the 2013 season. In each of the six meetings the Lady Bisons have never taken more than two points from FGCU, and have scored just seven total in the six-year history, compared to FGCU’s 33.

For complete coverage of FGCU women’s tennis over the weekend, follow us on Twitter @FGCU_WTEN and visit www.FGCUAthletics.com where full recaps and results will be available at the end of each day.