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SMC Tennis

Belles drop heartbreaker to Albion

| Thursday, April 10, 2014

Saint Mary’s fell from the ranks of teams undefeated in conference play Wednesday as it dropped a road matchup against Albion, 5-4.

The Belles (6-5, 2-1 MIAA) picked up a doubles victory at the No. 3 spot — sophomores Margaret Faller and Andrea Fetters won the flight 8-2 — but ultimately that was not enough to make up for the early deficit the Belles fell into during the singles matches.

The Britons (11-1, 5-0) held onto their lead in the singles matches, taking victories at the Nos. 1, 2 and 3 positions to solidify their spot at the top of the conference standings.

Saint Mary’s got a singles victory from Fetters at No. 5 singles in addition to victories from juniors Shannon Elliott and Audrey Kiefer in the Nos. 4 and 6 flights.

Albion remains at the top of the conference standings alongside Kalamazoo while Saint Mary’s is one of three schools with just one loss — Trine, whom the Belles beat 8-1 in March, and Hope. whom Saint Mary’s will play April 17. The top four teams in the standings at the end of the regular season make the conference tournament, with an automatic bid to the NCAA championship on the line.

The Belles are back in action today as they host Michiana rival Bethel at 4 p.m.

The Pilots (11-7, 3-5 Crossroads) come to Saint Mary’s on a two-game winning streak, having recorded victories over Trine on Saturday and against Manchester yesterday. Bethel’s schedule was primarily based in the fall season, as its loss to Indiana Tech on April 3 was their only other contest of the spring season.

Following today’s game against Bethel, Saint Mary’s hosts Alma for Senior Day on Saturday at 4 p.m.

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