Oct. 6, 2013
WHITEWATER, Wis. - The Grand Valley State women's tennis team traveled to Wisconsin to take part in the Warhawk/Panther Invitational over the weekend, hosted by Wisconsin-Whitewater and Wisconsin-Green Bay. The Lakers would pick up four titles to bring back to Michigan after another successful trip.
In #1 singles, Lexi Rice dropped her first two matches, but picked up a victory in the seventh-place match as she defeated UW-Green Bay's Stephanie Londre (7-6 (7-4), 6-3) in straight sets.
In #2 singles, Kali Phillips proved she was up to task, taking on three Division I opponents en route to a runner-up finish in the championship bracket. After defeating UW-Milwaukee's Chelsea Bailey (6-7 (7-9), 6-2, 10-7) in the quarterfinals, she picked up a victory over New Jersey Institute of Technology's Martina Tripcovici (6-0, 5-7, 10-7) in the semifinals. In the championship, she met up with Northern Illinois' Haley Dekkinga and fought valiantly, but fell in straight sets, 6-3, 6-3.
Leah Dancz and Niki Shipman both competed in #3 singles, but fell in their first matches. In the consolation bracket, Dancz defeated Ferris State's Gabrielle Demchenko (6-4, 6-4) and Shipman took down UW-Whitewater's Amy Upthagrove (6-1, 7-6 (7-3)) in the semifinals, but did not play each other in the final for that bracket.
The first individual title came from first-year Laker Carola Orna in #4 singles. After taking down NJIT's Carolina Zanotta (6-2, 6-2) in the quarterfinals and UW-Milwaukee's Aerielle Pendleton (6-0, 6-2) in the semifinals, Orna took on a third Division I opponent and won that, as well. In the finals, she faced Northern Illinois' Cristina Alvarez (2-6, 6-1, 10-7) and took home the title.
At #5 singles, another Laker found themselves in the title match. Kelly Trapp defeated Ferris State's Jessica Wilcox (6-0, 6-1) in the quarterfinals, then beat UW-Milwaukee's Kristin Kurer (6-4, 4-6, 12-10) in the semifinals. She took on Northern Illinois' Stephanie McDonald in the finals, but fell short, losing in straight sets, 6-4, 6-2.
Morgan Patterson won her first match at #6 singles, beating UW-Whitewater's Rachel Siemon (6-2, 6-0), but fell in the semifinals to UW-Milwaukee's Christina Colarossi (6-2, 6-4). In the third-place match, she took on Ferris State's Sydney Berens, but fell in a back-and-forth match, 6-1, 1-6, 10-8.
Another title came in for the Lakers at #7 singles courtesy of Kristina Lucas. Lucas beat a pair of UW-Whitewater competitors to begin her run in the quarters (Emily Sodemann; 6-2, 6-2) and the semis (Caitlin Fitzgerald; 6-0, 6-0), then defeated GLIAC foe Rebecca Beloungea from Ferris State in the title match by a score of 6-4, 6-0.
Moving in to doubles play, the team of Rice/Orna had the task of competing at #1 doubles. After winning their quarterfinal match over UW-Milwaukee's Colarossi/Tokar (8-3), they fell in the semifinals by a score of 8-6. In the third-place match, they rebounded, beating NJIT's Melibeau/Zanotta in a tight match by a score of 9-8 (8-4).
The team of Dancz/Phillips moved all the way to the finals in the #2 doubles championship bracket. They beat UW-Green Bay's Menos/Miketinac (8-2) in the quarters, then beat UW-Whitewater's Williams/Humphreys (8-1) in the semifinals. In the championship, however, they couldn't complete the Wisconsin trifecta, falling to UW-Milwaukee's Marshall/Straub by a score of 8-5.
In #3 doubles, the team of Shipman/Patterson sailed to a title without too much resistance. After winning their quarterfinal match over Ferris State's Alvarez/Beloungea by a score of 8-1, they upended UW-Whitewater's Siemon/Hendricks by a score of 8-2. In the finals, it was UW-Milwaukee's Pendleton/Kurer who succombed to the Laker duo by a score of 8-5.
The final title of the weekend came in #4 doubles, where the team of Trapp/Lucas won two matches en route to the title in a four-team field. They didn't give up a single game in the match, winning in the semifinals over UW-Whitewater's Miller/Fitzgerald (8-0) and then dominating the finals over UW-Whitewater's Benhoff/Zeilinger (8-0).
The Lakers will get back in to dual match play this week, beginning with a contest against Northwood at the GVSU Tennis Courts on Wednesday (Oct. 9) at 2 p.m. Northwood, a perennial GLIAC powerhouse, will come in to the match at 10-0 overall and in the GLIAC, while the Lakers are just behind at 9-1 overall with an 8-1 mark in the conference.