JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. – The FGCU women’s tennis team won the doubles point and won three singles matches in a tough quarterfinal match against Atlantic Sun conference foe Jacksonville, 4-2, in the A-Sun Championships on Friday at the Buddy Hartsell Courts.
The Eagles improve to 10-10 (6-3 A-Sun) on the season and Jacksonville falls to 7-13 (4-5 A-Sun). With the victory, FGCU advances to play No.2 seeded ETSU in Saturday’s semifinals of the 2012 Atlantic Sun Women’s Tennis Championships. Due to the weather forecast calling for precipitation in the afternoon, the match has been moved to Milligan College at 10:30 a.m. in an attempt to beat the weather.
With FGCU leading 3-2, sophomore Bettina Botha (Cape Town, South Africa/DeKuilen HS) clinched the match with a tough three set win against Gabriela Bartos, 4-6, 6-4, 6-0, at No. 3 singles. Botha dropped the first set, 6-4, but rallied to win the second set 6-4 and closed the match with dominant 6-0 result.
The Green and Blue opened the match by winning two doubles matches to take a 1-0 lead against the Dolphins. Senior Jen Evans (Fort Myers, Fla./Evangelical Christian HS) and sophomore Gyanna Mandic (Oshowa, Canada/Edison Academies) won against Djessika Bezerra and Virginia Iwinski, 8-1, at No. 2 doubles. At No. 1 doubles, the team of junior Morgan Bechtel (Toledo, Ohio/St. Ursula Academy) and freshman Marina Diez (Miami, Fla./West Broward HS) lost to Natalia Melibeu and Aline Staudt, 8-4.
In the final doubles match, Botha and freshman Sarah Means (Wesley Chapel, Fla./Wiregrass Ranch HS) clinched the point with a 8-6 win against Gabriela Bartos and Veronique Spencer, at No. 3 doubles.
In singles, FGCU took a 2-0 lead after Evans won in straight sets against Bezerra, 6-3, 6-4, at No. 4 singles. The Eagles made it 3-0 when Mandic rallied to win in three sets against Iwinski, 1-6, 6-2, 6-2, at No. 5 singles.
Jacksonville rallied to win at No. 6 singles as Spencer defeated Diez, 3-6, 6-2, 6-2, in three sets. Diez won the first set 6-3, but lost the final two sets to give the Dolphins their first point.
The Dolphins cut the lead to 3-2 when Staudt took down Means in straight sets, 7-5, 6-2, at No. 1 singles.
Bechtel’s match went unfinished as in postseason play the first team to secure four points wins the match. Bechtel was winning 7-6 (7-5), 5-2, in the second set.