Tennis Lady ‘Cats start 2021 season 0-2


BUCKHANNON – The West Virginia Wesleyan Lady Bobcat tennis team opened their 2021 season with a pair of home matches against Salem and West Liberty last week.

The Lady ‘Cats dropped a 5-2 decision last Tuesday in non-conference action and then returned the next day and lost a 7-0 decision to West Liberty in a non-Mountain East Conference match.

Against Salem, after winning a default point at No. 3 doubles, Wesleyan lost the doubles points by losing matches at No. 1 and No. 2, both by 6-1 scores.

In singles action, No. 1 Sai Sakamoto faced one of her toughest competitors of the year in NCAA Division II Player to Watch, Ana Kunic. After dropping the first set 6-0, Sakamoto scratched and clawed in the second set before falling 6-3.

Wesleyan earned default points in No. 5 and No. 6 to round out the scoring.

Salem improved to 2-1 on the season.

The Hilltoppers made quick work of the Lady Bobcats in doubles play to take a 1-0 lead heading into singles action.

Newcomer Julia Pinto rallied from a 6-0 first set loss to force a tightly contested second set, winning four games in a row to take a 5-4 lead, but ultimately dropping her No. 3 singles match 6-0, 7-5 to Ishika Agarwal.

No. 4 Madison Chen and No. 6 Jackie Zavala played well in the second sets of their singles matches, falling 6-1, 6-3 and 6-0, 6-2, respectively.

The Lady Bobcats (0-2) will return to action Saturday when they host Bluefield State at 1 p.m.

The results:

Salem 5                             WVWC 2

Singles

No. 1 – Ana Kunic (S) def. Sai Sakamoto, 6-0, 6-3.

No. 2 – Iryna Rusyn (S) def. Rebecca Osborne, 6-0, 6-0.

No. 3 – Airi Ohashi (S) def. Julia Pinto, 6-1, 6-3.

No. 4 – Kristina Vuksanovic (S) def. Madison Chen, 6-2, 6-1

No. 5 – Molly Hull (WVWC) won by forfeit.

No. 6 – Jackie Zavala (WVWC) won by forfeit.

Doubles

No. 1 – Kunic/Ohasi (S) def. Chen/Sakamoato, 6-1.

No. 2 – Vuksanovic/Rusyn (S) def. Osborne/Pinto, 6-1.

No. 3 – Hull/Zavala (WVWC) won by forfeit.

West Liberty 7                WVWC 0

Singles

No. 1 – Gemma Cliffe (WL) def. Rebecca Osborne, 6-3, 6-3.

No. 2 – Nathalia Valenica (WL) def. Sai Sakamoto, 6-0, 6-1.

No. 3 – Ishika Agarwal (WL) def. Julia Pinto, 6-0, 7-5.

No. 4 – Luisa Agudelo (WL) def. Madison Chen, 6-1, 6-3.

No. 5 – Jaqueline PenaAceves (WL) def. Molly Hull, 6-1, 6-0.

No. 6 – Alexandra Olson (WL) def. Jackie Zavala, 6-0, 6-2

Doubles

No. 1 – Cliffe/Agarwal (WL) def. Sakamoto/Pinto, 6-1.

No. 2 – Agudelo/PenaAceves (WL) def. Chen/Hull, 6-0.

No. 3 – Valenica/Olson (WL) def. Osborne/Zavala, 6-0.

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