FGCU Finishes Play at Fall-Opening UCF Invitational
Sunday, September 30, 2012 | by Patrick Pierson (@pierson_sid)
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Botha capped her weekend with a singles victory against Marquette. (Photo by Dennis Snyder)
Botha capped her weekend with a singles victory against Marquette. (Photo by Dennis Snyder)

ORLANDO, Fla. – The FGCU women’s tennis finished its stay at the fall-opening UCF Invitational on Sunday, taking on Atlantic Sun foe Stetson in doubles and BIG EAST member Marquette in singles action.

The Eagles were able to pick up a pair of doubles and singles wins on the day, as three different players finished the weekend with either a 2-1 record in singles or doubles.

For the second straight day, freshman Johanna Sterkel (Schwetzingen, Germany/Carl-Theodor-Schule HS) won in three sets taking a 6-2, 4-6, 1-0(10-8) match against Marquette’s Aina Hernandez. Sterkel closed the weekend strong with two straight singles wins and teamed with junior Bettina Botha (Cape Town, South Africa/De Kuilen HS) to go 2-1 in doubles.

Sophomore Sarah Means (Wesley Chapel, Fla./Wiregrass Ranch HS) equaled Sterkel’s team-best four combined wins this weekend. Sarah went 2-1 in singles and teamed with her sister freshman Elizabeth Means (Wesley Chapel, Fla./Wiregrass Ranch HS) in doubles for two wins. The sister tandem capped the weekend with the team’s lone doubles win over Stetson, a 9-8 thriller against Cable and Stauffer-MacDowell.

Botha accounted for FGCU’s final singles win against Marquette with a convincing 6-1, 6-2 victory against Aleeza Kanner. Both had a combined three wins on the weekend. Junior Gyanna Mandic (Oshowa, Canada/Edison Academies) nearly made it two straight singles wins, but lost the final two sets to Ali Dawson after winning the first, 6-0.

FGCU will have a few weeks off before it resumes its fall season at the ITA Regionals in Tampa, Fla. from Oct. 19-21.

Doubles – Stetson vs. FGCU
Diana Bukajeva/Andrea Crespo (STET) def. Gyanna Mandic/Morgan Bechtel (FGCU) 8-2
Sara Lazarevic/Jen Miller (STET) def. Bettina Botha/Johanna Sterkel (FGCU) 8-6
Sara Means/Elizabeth Means (FGCU) def. Lindsey Cable/MayaBlue Stauffer-MacDowell (STET) 9-8
Clarke Tatje/Rachel Luke (STET) def. Zhoe Solaun/Marina Diez (FGCU) 8-1

Singles – Marquette vs. FGCU
Ana Pimienta (MU) def. Sarah Means (FGCU) 6-4, 6-3
Erin Gebes (MU) def. Morgan Bechtel (FGCU) 6-3, 6-2
Johanna Sterkel (FGCU) def. Aina Hernandez (MU) 6-2, 4-6, 1-0(10-8)
Rocio Diaz (MU) def. Elizabeth Means (FGCU) 6-4, 6-4
Bettina Botha (FGCU) def. Aleeza Kanner (MU) 6-1, 6-2
Vanessa Foltinger (MU) def. Zhoe Solaun (FGCU) 6-0, 6-1
Ali Dawson (MU) def. Gyanna Mandic (FGCU) 0-6, 6-2, 1-0(10-7)
Laia Hernandez (MU) def. Marina Diez (FGCU) 6-0, 6-0