By Scott Sutton, For The Miami Student
The Miami University tennis team (12-10) fell to Western Michigan University (19-7) 4-2 in the semifinals of the Mid-American-Conference championship.
The match began with doubles play. The ’Hawks won the first match, 6-3, by solid playing by first-year Anzhelika Shapovalova and junior Andreea Badileanu. The pair defeated first-year Katja Fevralev and junior Barbare Eristavi. The duo of sophomore Hannah Shteyn and senior Ana Rajkovic lost their match 7-5, as well as sophomores Nelli Ponomareva and Anastasiia Vasiukhina. These losses resulted in the Broncos taking a 1-0 lead.
Coach Carollo was unhappy with the result but believes that her team fought very hard.
“The team has been playing very good tennis going into this semi-final match,” said Carollo. “I think we played a very good team. Western Michigan exposed our weaknesses and they got the best of us. All we can do now is stay healthy and look toward next season.”
Singles play commenced with a win from freshman Emily Struble who defeated junior Meika Ashby 7-5, 6-2. The next Miami win would come from Shapovalova who defeated Eristavi 7-6, 6-4. Ponomareva’s match went unfinished.
Struble finished her impressive first season with a record of 29-8. She was 18-3 in dual matches, 11-5 in away matches, and undefeated, 9-0, against MAC players. Struble ended on a nine match winning streak. She was disappointed that her team lost but is optimistic about the future.
I wasn’t expecting to have so much success as far as wins and losses coming into my first season but overall I am really happy that I could contribute to team wins,” said Struble. “Even when we didn’t win it was always nice to at least get my team on the scoreboard. Obviously this is not how we wanted our season to end, but we are just starting to look towards next season. We will be keeping our consistency drills going because we feel that those helped us the most in MAC play and we will be working a little more on our net game to secure doubles a little bit more.”
The team will be losing one senior, Ana Rajkovic, from Belgrade, Serbia, next season. Miami ended their season 12-10, 7-1 MAC