Trio of Beacons Capture Singles Wins Against Bellarmine
Friday, February 2, 2024
Trio of Beacons Capture Singles Wins Against Bellarmine
Elizabeth Sobieski picked up a thrilling three-set singles win on Friday.

Valparaiso University tennis senior Olivia Czerwonka (Kenosha, Wis. / Saint Joseph Catholic Academy) defeated her singles opponent in straight sets while Moira Silva (Houston, Texas / Houston Tennis Academy) and Elizabeth Sobieski (Muskego, Wis. / Muskego) both battled their way to three-set triumphs, but visiting Bellarmine edged the Beacons 4-3 on Friday at The Courts of Northwest Indiana in a tightly-contested match.  

How It Happened

  • Bellarmine took a doubles point that would prove pivotal by winning all three courts. The tightest match occurred at No. 2, where Sobieski and Sydney Stone (Brisbane, Australia [Tyler JC]) jumped out to an early lead but Bellarmine’s Tikhonko/Kryslova had several breaks late to extend the match to a 6-6 tiebreak, which the Knights won 7-5. Valpo jumped ahead early at both No. 1 and No. 3, but the guests finished those matches strong.
  • The first singles player off the court was Czerwonka, who downed Bellarmine’s Marika Caruk at No. 2. She breezed to a 6-1 win in the first set before overcoming an early deficit to take the second set 6-4. She trailed 4-1 before taking the final five games of Set 2.  
  • Valpo’s other singles victories both came in thrilling fashion. At No. 1, Silva came from behind to win the first set 6-3 after dropping the first three games. Bellarmine’s Ekaterina Tikhonko made one break stand in the second set, prevailing 6-4 to even the match at one set apiece. A topsy-turvy third set saw Silva build up a 4-1 lead before Tikhonko strung together four straight games to move ahead 5-4 and create a chance to serve for the match. Silva broke to extend the match, then both players held to create a 6-6 tie and send the third set into a tiebreak. Silva dominated the breaker 7-1.
  • Simultaneous to Silva’s showdown at No. 1, enthralling tennis also occurred on the No. 5 singles court, where Sobieski locked horns with Yeva Kramarova. A pumped-up Sobieski won a close first set 6-4, but Kramarova rebounded by pulling away 6-1 in the second set to force a third. At 4-4 in the third, Kramarova broke serve to go up 5-4 and create a chance to serve for the match. Sobieski broke to even the match at five, then the players traded holds to create a tiebreak. In the tiebreak, Sobieski was down 5-3 and won a big service point to get within 5-4. Sobieski broke on both Bellarmine service points to jump ahead 6-5. She served for the match and delivered, winning an emotional match 6-4, 1-6, 7-6(5).
  • Bellarmine won the remaining three singles matches in straight sets, with the closest coming at No. 4, where Stone succumbed to Erica Kanna Hagi in two tight ones, 6-4, 7-6(7).

Inside the Matches

  • Silva upped her mark to 11-3 in singles including a 6-0 dual match record. She already owns 29 career wins as only a sophomore.
  • Czerwonka improved to 12-4 this season and increased her program-record singles win total to 75. She became just the sixth player in school history (men’s and women’s) to reach 75 wins, joining former men’s tennis standouts Jeffrey Schorsch, Kyle Dunn, Charlie Emhardt, Dave Bacalla and Chad Kissell.
  • Sobieski garnered her ninth singles triumph of the season.

Up Next

The Beacons (3-3) will continue the home weekend by hosting St. Thomas on Sunday at noon at The Courts of Northwest Indiana.