Fifth-year senior Eleanor Chapman (East Sussex, England / Eastbourne College [UT Martin / Lipscomb]) was victorious in her program singles debut and Olivia Czerwonka (Kenosha, Wis. / Saint Joseph Catholic Academy) started the spring slate on a winning note as the Valparaiso University tennis team began the 2023 portion of the season on Saturday. Host Cleveland State prevailed 5-2 at Medical Mutual Tennis Center in Cleveland. The match was tightly contested with three singles matches going to a third set.
How It Happened
- Chapman wasted no time in making a strong first impression with her new team, prevailing in a three-set affair with Selma Tounsi of Cleveland State at No. 5 singles. The midyear transfer garnered a 6-3, 4-6, 6-2 victory.
- Czerwonka also started the spring on a winning note, as she achieved a straight-set sweep of Oihane Vicario at No. 1 singles.
- Two other matches went the distance as Moira Silva (Houston, Texas / Houston Tennis Academy) and Demi Jhaveri (Westlake, Ohio / Westlake) both rallied to win Set 2, extending their matches at No. 2 and No. 4, respectively before the Vikings eventually won the third frame. Another close contest came at No. 6, where Mia Bertino (Lockport, Ill. / Joliet Catholic) fell in a pair of tight sets, 6-4, 7-6(3).
- Cleveland State won on all three doubles courts.
Inside the Match
- This match came against a quality opponent as Cleveland State was picked second in the Horizon League preseason poll and was clipped by Youngstown State 45-42 in the balloting for preseason favorite recognition. Two of the seven Horizon League coaches voted for the Vikings to win the league.
- Czerwonka’s win came over Vicario, who was named the Horizon League Co-Freshman of the Year and earned a spot on the All-League First Team after winning 20 singles matches a year ago.
- This was the 54th career singles win for Czerwonka, a total that ranks sixth in program history. She improved to 8-2 this season including 4-0 in dual matches.
The Beacons (3-1) will open the home portion of the spring season next week as SIUE visits The Courts of Northwest Indiana at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 28.