Valparaiso University opened competition at the inaugural River Forest Invitational on Friday playing on the clay courts of River Forest Tennis Club in a tournament that also featured the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay and Western Illinois University.
“It is just a beautiful facility and we were excited to play here in River Forest,” head coach Traci Young said. “The team enjoyed playing on the clay courts after always playing on the hard courts.”
The Crusaders’ Kristin Zakiewicz (Bristol, Ind./Northridge H.S.) and Brittany O’Reilly (Green Bay, Wis./Southwest H.S.) teamed for an 8-6 victory over the duo of Amy Unzicker and Claire Griffin of Western Illinois in their first match of the day. The tandem fell later in the afternoon 8-2 against Rebecca Nelson and Jennifer Bradfield of Green Bay.
Jackie O’Reilly (Green Bay, Wis./DePere H.S.) and Stephanie York (Elkhart, Ind./Jimtown H.S.) fell 8-0 against Marcela Brandao and Jill Furlong in their first match. The duo also fell 8-2 against Emily Lawent and Morgan Weuve of Green Bay. The other doubles match on Friday saw Maria Anderson and Julia Kedrzyski of Green Bay down Katie Bilyeu (Terre Haute, Ind./South Vigo H.S.) and Shea Hennessy (Palos Park, Ill./Marist H.S.) 8-1.
In singles action, York earned a 6-3, 6-3 win over Green Bay’s Nelson while falling 6-1, 7-6 (4) in her second match against Griffin of Western Illinois. Zakiewicz dropped a 6-3, 6-3 decision to Unzicker and also lost 6-3, 6-0 in the same flight against Weuve.
Flight one saw Brittany O’Reilly fall 6-1, 6-3 against Bradfield while Lawent also defeated the sophomore 6-1, 6-2. Brandao was a 6-1, 6-0 winner against Hennessy while Furlong also topped Hennessy 6-0, 6-0.
Bilyeu dropped a 7-6 (4), 6-2 setback against Kedrzyski of Green Bay in the third flight while Stephanie Krebs (Idaho Falls, Idaho/Idaho Falls H.S.) fell 6-0, 6-0 against Anderson.
“We had some good matches today,” Young added. “We had a couple of solid wins and a couple of tough sets we lost in tie-breaks. Everyone played a lot more aggressive today than they had been recently.”
Valparaiso will close out play at the tournament on Saturday morning beginning at 9 a.m.