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SMC Tennis

Belles swing past Scots in conference match

| Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Saint Mary’s defeated Alma by a score of 6-3 in an MIAA conference match Saturday at Angela Athletic Center. The victory improved the Belles to 6-6 on the season and 1-1 in conference play.

In singles competition, the play was fierce and decisive. Not a single match went to a third set, instead they were decided in straight sets. Belles junior Andrea Fetters ended up on the wrong side of her match, losing 6-4, 6-2, at the top of the singles lineup. In the next match, senior Kayle Sexton was victorious in straight sets, beating her opponent 6-0, 6-4. Senior Jackie Kjohlede dominated, winning her match in straight sets 6-0, 6-0. Senior Shannon Elliot was narrowly edged out in straight sets, 7-5, 6-1, at the fourth spot, but junior Margaret Faller controlled her match from the onset, winning 6-1, 6-0, while freshman Bailey Oppman finished off the singles matches with a 6-1, 6-1, victory.

“I was happy with our singles play because we are playing with a bit more patience in some situations,” Belles head coach Dale Campbell said. “Jackie Kjolhede at No. 3 [singles] had an impressive 6-0, 6-0 victory. Most all of our singles players had good matches, however Shannon is battling through some injuries at No. 4 and our No. 1 Andrea Fetters played a tough, experienced opponent.”

The day’s doubles action featured hard-fought performances from both sides. Saint Mary’s top doubles team of Sexton and Faller ended up on the wrong side of a closely contested match, losing by a score of 8-6. The team of Elliott and Fetters cruised to an 8-2 victory in their match. Sophomore Sam Setterblad and freshman Maddie Minaudo rounded out doubles play for the Belles with an 8-3 victory.

“We still need to come out with more energy for doubles, basically being more assertive,” Campbell said. “There are opportunities to take the net, and opportunities to pick off volleys that we are not taking.  We can increase those chances by at least 30 percent, so that is a focal point. Getting two out of three doubles is important, and we actually have not done that enough. It was nice to win at least two (Saturday), but I thought we had the potential to sweep them.”

Saint Mary’s next match is against conference foe No. 14 Indiana Wesleyan at Angela Athletic Center on Wednesday at 4:00 p.m. The match was originally scheduled to be played today but was postponed due to Monday’s inclement weather.

“[Indiana Wesleyan is] a strong non-conference opponent with a lot of talent and power,” Campbell said. “We will have to adjust the best we can in a short amount of time, but we have played a few strong teams like them.”


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