The Valparaiso University women’s tennis team gave Oakland everything it could handle on Saturday afternoon at the Valpo Tennis Complex, but the chance to knock off the Grizzlies came up short in a 4-3 defeat. The Crusaders have made progress in recent matches, scoring two team points or more in each of their last four.
How It Happened
- The Crusaders started strong as Kathleen Hebble (Sellersburg, Ind. / Silver Creek) and Paige Heuer (Munster, Ind. / Munster) picked up a win at No. 1 doubles, defeating Alexandra Whall and Amanda Nilsson 6-3.
- The No. 2 doubles match finished shortly thereafter, as Meg Modesto (Chesterton, Ind. / Chesterton) and Randi Wind (Park Ridge, Ill. / Maine South) dropped a 6-3 decision to Daria Artamonova and Sofia Borcuti.
- The doubles point – which ultimately decided the match – came down to No. 3 between Valpo’s Dao Sysouvanh (Sun Prairie, Wis. / Sun Prairie) and Morgan Paras (Indianapolis, Ind. / Bishop Chatard) and Oakland’s Samantha Galloway and Marija Milic. The Crusaders started strong, as they were up 40-15 while already holding a 5-2 lead in the match. The Grizzlies roared back to win 7-5.
- The two teams split the six singles matches, with Valpo’s most convincing win coming at No. 2 as Heuer downed Whall 6-3, 6-1.
- The other two Valpo wins took three sets to decide and were the final two matches to finish. Sysouvanh split the first two sets with Milic 6-2, 4-6 at No. 6, but then played her best tennis of the day to win the third set tiebreak.
- Modesto continued her flare for the dramatic, once again coming from behind to win as the last match to finish at No. 3. After losing the first set 3-6, she picked up a tight 7-6 (6-4) win in Set 2, then cruised to a 10-2 win in the third set tiebreak with the entirety of both teams looking on.
- Hebble (No. 1), Jordan Kopfer (No. 4) and Wind (No. 5) all fell in straight sets.
Inside the Match
- The Crusaders (2-17, 1-7 Horizon) nearly played the role of spoiler against an Oakland (8-11, 4-4 Horizon) team that is attempting to hold on to a Horizon League Tournament berth.
- Heuer picked up her 40th career doubles win, ranking eighth in program history. Hebble’s doubles victory was her 31st, which sits 10th in program history.
- Hebble and Heuer move to 14-13 in doubles this season, busting into the Top 10 in program history single-season doubles wins. They have the most wins in a season by any Valpo women’s doubles players in the last 11 years.
- Modesto grabbed her sixth victory of the season and her second league triumph, while Sysouvanh notched her fourth overall win and her team-leading third league win.
- Heuer’s singles victory was her third of the season and her second in league play.
The Crusaders will round out the 2017 season on Sunday against Detroit Mercy at 10 a.m. CT at the Valpo Tennis Complex.