Valparaiso opened play on a windy Friday morning in the Horizon League Tennis Championships dropping a 4-0 decision to fourth-seeded Cleveland State in the first round of play in Indianapolis, Ind.
“We played them a lot closer than we did the first time we saw them during the regular season,” head coach Traci Young said. “Everyone played with a lot of heart.”
Cleveland State (16-10) opened winning at second and third doubles to capture the first point of the day. Melissa Holzinger and Jackie Tabb defeated Jenny Schwartz (Aurora, Ill./West Aurora H.S.) and Julie Wingstrom (Dallas Lake, Ind./Westview H.S.) 8-0 at the second spot while Sanda Bjelan and Myra Pepino were 8-5 victors over Katie Bilyeu (Terre Haute, Ind./South Vigo H.S.) and Stephanie York (Elkhart, Ind./Jimtown H.S.). The Vikings’ Catrine Bjerrehus and Charlotte Gibbons led Kim Sajevic (Woodbury, Minn./Woodbury H.S.) and Molly Keifer (Richmond, Ind./Richmond H.S.) 6-4 when the first doubles match was stopped.
In singles play, Schwartz held a 6-4, 1-3 lead over Holzinger at the third spot, but the contest was stopped when the overall team match was decided.
“Jenny had a great first set,” added Young.
Tabb defeated Bilyeu 6-2, 6-2 at fourth singles while Bjeland was a 6-0, 6-2 winner against York at number five singles. Pepino added a 6-0, 6-3 win against Lindsey Gustafson (Naperville, Ill./Benet Academy) at the sixth spot in the other match played to completion.
Cleveland State led in the other two matches as Bjerrehus held a 6-2, 5-3 lead on Sajevic at number one and Gibbons had a 6-2, 5-1 lead on Keifer at the second spot.
“We hope to come out tomorrow and play well to wrap up the year,” concluded Young.
Valparaiso (1-21) will return to the courts on Saturday morning to close out the 2009 season in the consolation draw as the Crusaders face Wright State beginning at 8 a.m. CDT. The eighth seeded Raiders lost 4-0 to YoungstownState in the first round.