HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. – Notching a Division-I program record 12th victory of the season, the FGCU women’s tennis team picked up its fifth Atlantic Sun Conference win by downing Northern Kentucky, 5-2, Friday afternoon.
The Eagles improve to 12-7 (5-2 A-Sun) on the season, while the Norse fall to 5-10 (0-5 A-Sun).
“We were challenged today playing our match indoors because of weather,” head coach Courtney Vernon said. “We struggled in doubles, but it was a great opportunity to grow. Fortunately the girls were very focused in singles play and able to get the job done. We’re looking forward to finishing the regular season strong tomorrow at Lipscomb.”
The Eagles victorious ways were slow to start, as the Norse took two of the three doubles matches for an early 1-0 advantage. Finding success for FGCU, in the No. 2 position, were partners Johanna Sterkel (Schwetzingen, Germany/Carl-Theodor-Schule HS) and Bettina Botha (Cape Town, South Africa/De Kuilen HS) as they routed NKU’s Yasmine Xantos and Nicole Soutar to an 8-1 setback.
Redeeming their troubling doubles play, the Green and Blue dominated singles play, winning five matches, four of which were in straight sets.
After combining to win their doubles match, partners Botha and Sterkel continued their victorious ways as they went on to win their respective singles contests, each with the same score. With Botha facing Sierra Nellessen in the No. 6 slot, and Sterkel facing Marta Romeo in the No. 3 slot, both Eagles took their first set with a score of 6-1 and the second at 6-3.
Holding her opponent to just three games was Candela Munoz (Alicante, Spain/Troy) who played the No. 4 position. Facing NKU’s Nicole Soutar, Munoz took the first set in uncontested fashion 6-0, and the second in a quick 6-3.
Rounding out the five wins were Elizabeth Means (Wesley Chapel, Fla./Wiregrass Ranch HS) and Breana Stampfli (Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago/St. Joseph’s Convent) playing No. 5 and No. 2, respectively. Coming out on top of a three-set battle was Means, clinching a 4-6, 6-0, 6-1 victory from Yasmine Xantos, while Stampfli defeated Danielle Donahue 6-4, 6-2.
The Green and Blue will end regular-season action as they travel to Nashville, taking on Lipscomb Saturday at 10 a.m. For complete coverage of FGCU women’s tennis this season follow us on Twitter at @FGCU_WTEN and visit www.FGCUAthletics.com where full recaps and results will be available.
FGCU: 5 NKU: 2
1. Maria Voscekova/Danielle Donahue (NKU) def. Elizabeth Means/Sarah Means (FGCU) 8-1
2. Bettina Botha/Johanna Sterkel (FGCU) def. Yasmine Xantos/Nicole Soutar (NKU) 8-1
3. Marta Romeo/Sierra Nellessen (NKU) def. Gyanna Mandic/Candela Munoz Giron (FGCU) 8-4
1. Maria Voscekova (NKU) def. Sarah Means (FGCU) 6-3, 2-6, 7-5
2. Breana Stampfli (FGCU) def. Danielle Donahue (NKU) 6-4, 6-2
3. Johanna Sterkel (FGCU) def. Marta Romeo (NKU) 6-1, 6-3
4. Candela Munoz Giron (FGCU) def. Nicole Soutar (NKU) 6-0, 6-3
5. Elizabeth Means (FGCU) def. Yasmine Xantos (NKU) 4-6, 6-0, 6-1
6. Bettina Botha (FGCU) def. Sierra Nellessen (NKU) 6-1, 6-3