FORT MYERS, Fla. – Picking up its second-straight win in the Atlantic Sun Conference, the FGCU women’s tennis team topped Stetson, for just the second time in program history, with a 5-2 win over the Hatters on Wednesday afternoon at the FGCU Tennis Complex.
The Eagles move to 8-6 (2-1 A-Sun) on the season, while Stetson falls to 10-3 (1-2 A-Sun).
“The girls competed well today,” head coach Courtney Vernon said. “They stayed mentally focused and it showed in the way they performed. We are looking forward to hosting North Florida on Friday.”
Beginning down the road to triumph, FGCU collected wins in two doubles matches for an early 1-0 advantage. Picking up their fourth-consecutive victory were sisters Sara Means (Wesley Chapel, Fla./Wiregrass Ranch HS) and Elizabeth Means (Wesley Chapel, Fla./Wiregrass Ranch HS) with an 8-7 (7-4) win at one-doubles over Diana Bukajeva and Isabella Fernandez. The other pair to find success was Johanna Sterkel (Schwetzingen, Germany/Carl-Theodor-Schule HS) and Bettina Botha (Cape Town, South Africa/De Kuilen HS) taking down Stetson’s Andrea Crespo and Cari Berry, 8-6, in two doubles.
In singles play, the Green and Blue collected the points they needed to win the overall contest plus more, winning four matches.
Needing just two sets to find victory was Breana Stampfli (Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago/St. Joseph’s Convent), collecting a win in the No. 2 slot. Facing Stetson’s Andrea Crespo, Stampfli took the first set, 6-3, and the second 6-4.
At the four-singles spot, Candela Munoz (Alicante, Spain/Troy) handed MayaBlue Stauffer-MacDowell a 6-2 decision in the first set before Stauffer-MacDowell retired from the match trailing Munoz in the second set 5-1.
Playing the No. 3 slot was Sterkel with a takedown of Isabella Fernandez in three sets. Sterkel took the first set 6-4, but Fernandez flipped the score in the second to knot the match at one set apiece. In the deciding third set, Sterkel kept focused for a quick 6-3 win and secure of the match.
After winning the first, 7-6 (8-6), the sophomore dropped the second 1-6, but rebounded in the third with a 6-4 win.
Joining her partner in the winner’s circle was Botha with a victory in the No. 6 slot over Stetson’s Eveline Lepinay. Botha took the first set an uncontested 6-0, but dropped the second a close 5-7. Knowing she could bring the match home, Botha played with confidence resulting in a quick win at the mark of 6-2.
The Green and Blue continue home action as they welcome the University of North Florida for a dual match on Mar. 21 at 10 a.m. For complete coverage of FGCU women’s tennis follow us on Twitter at @FGCU_WTEN and visit www.FGCUAthletics.com where full recaps and results will be available at the end of each day.
FGCU: 5 Stetson: 2
1. Sarah Means/Elizabeth Means (FGCU) def. Diana Bukajeva/Isabella Fernandez (STET) 8-7 (7-4)
2. Bettina Botha/Johanna Sterkel (FGCU) def. Andrea Crespo/Cari Berry (STET) 8-6
3. Eveline Lepinay/Lindsey Cable (STET) def. Breana Stampfli/Candela Munoz Giron (FGCU) 8-5
1. Diana Bukajeva (STET) def. Sarah Means (FGCU) 6-4, 6-1
2. Breana Stampfli (FGCU) def. Andrea Crespo (STET) 6-3, 6-4
3. Johanna Sterkel (FGCU) def. Isabella Fernandez (STET) 6-4, 4-6, 6-3
4. Candela Munoz Giron (FGCU) def. M Stauffer-MacDowell (STET) 6-2, 5-1
5. Cari Berry (STET) def. Elizabeth Means (FGCU) 6-4, 2-6, 6-4
6. Bettina Botha (FGCU) def. Eveline Lepinay (STET) 6-0, 5-7, 6-2