Women’s tennis team loses both matches

Blake Faith, Women's Tennis Reporter

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By Blake Faith

Women’s Tennis Reporter | @BFAITH0024

Eastern’s women tennis team struggled Saturday and Sunday, losing to both Bradley University and Omaha to make their record 3-2.

Although this weekend did not look better on paper, the team is still focused on competing, improving and winning.
“This weekend was tough as we took two losses, but there were positives we need to build off of,” head coach Chris Tolson said. “I am happy with the way our girls competed all weekend and with their attitudes. If we continue to stay positive and work hard, our best tennis is still in our future.”

The pair of sophomore Rachel Papavasilopoulos and senior Srishti Slaria won both doubles matches this weekend against Bradley and Omaha.

“I think Rachel and I played well in both our doubles matches,” Slaria said. “We were very aggressive at the net against Omaha and made good use of the opportunities we got. I want to keep building up on that and work towards staying aggressive.”

The pair of senior Abby Carpenter and sophomore Claire Martin won their doubles match against Bradley in the number two slot.
“In doubles, we need to continue to play and swing aggressively on groundstrokes, serves, and volleys,” Carpenter said. “Me and Claire had a great doubles win against Bradley, and we want to continue to succeed so we can secure the doubles point against every school.”

Papavasilopoulos lost her first singles match against Bradley’s Sandra Maletin in two sets. In her match against Omaha’s Janelle Wilson, Papavasilopoulos would win, defeating Wilson in two sets.

Slaria would lose both of her singles matches, losing to Bradley’s Bozana Lojpur in three sets and Omaha’s Ines Absisan. Slaria plans to work at singles this week and being able to produce “more variety in her strokes.”

Carpenter and Martin lost both of their singles matches. While both did not do well this weekend, their focus is not in the past, but on to what is coming up next.

“I think the matches next weekend will really test us to see if we can bounce back from this weekend,” Martin said. “They are both two really good teams. I think we need to put last weekend behind us and go in with a positive attitude and trust in the work that we will do this week to prepare for those matches.”

Junior Shelby Anderson would post a two-set win at No. 5 singles to defeat Bradley’s Nina Marjannovic. Sophomore Karla Contreras would defeat Omaha’s Rylee Tucker in two sets at Eastern’s No. 6 spot.

“I think everyone fought well this weekend even though the results were not in our favor,” Slaria said. “As a team, we must encourage each other and keep the energy high, especially as we get deeper into season.”

The team’s goal for the upcoming weekend is to compete hard, gain more momentum and improve its record to 5-2.

The women’s tennis team will travel to Indiana this weekend to play Ball State and Indianapolis. The first meet will be against Ball State Saturday at 12 p.m.
“For this week in practice and the upcoming weekend, I really want to stress the importance of positivity and having fun when playing,” Carpenter said. “We are so fortunate to compete in a sport that every single one of us love, and that should show every time we step on court. When we all go out there and truly enjoy ourselves in matches, the results show.”

Blake Faith can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]