GWU and LU Win Conference Matches Tuesday
Gardner-Webb 4, Campbell 3 *
GWU won at four of six singles positions, including crucial three-set wins from Alice Hopkins and Ioana Oprea, to come out on top in a tight 4-3 match at Campbell on Tuesday.
The win snaps a two match losing streak for the Runnin' Bulldogs.
Gardner-Webb (10-8, 3-4) had to battle back from an early 1-0 deficit incurred during doubles play. Campbell (9-4, 1-3) got a quick win from Tamara Stanic/Katya Yegoreychenko at No. 2 doubles to gain an early advantage. Both doubles matches at No. 1 and No. 3 went down to tiebreak, and GWU got a 9-8 win from Erica White/Ronia Hutterli at the No. 3 slot, but Campbell's Karolina Chernaya/Borslava Nikolova edged GWU's Ioana Oprea/Jenny Lunde 9-8 to put the Fightin' Camels on top 1-0.
White keyed the comeback with a win at No. 1 singles. The junior held off a hard-charging effort from Chernaya to win 6-2, 7-5 for the Runnin' Bulldogs.
At No. 5 singles, junior Ronia Hutterli picked up a key win for GWU in outlasting Yegoreychenko 7-5, 7-6.
Gardner-Webb also received wins at No. 2 and No. 3 singles from Hopkins and Oprea respectively. After dropping the first set in her match, Hopkins went to work, coming from behind to earn a 1-6, 6-2, 6-4 triumph over Stanic at No. 2 singles. Oprea bested Campbell's Natasha Afridi by a 6-3, 6-7, 6-1 margin
GWU's win over Campbell also snaps a three match Big South losing streak, moving the Runnin' Bulldogs within a win of a .500 Conference mark for the season.
Gardner-Webb next hosts Western Carolina in non-Conference action Sunday, April 1. The Runnin' Bulldogs' match vs. the Catamounts is set for a 1:00pm start time. Campbell will travel to Liberty on March 30 to play at 2:00pm.
Liberty 4, Radford 3 *
The doubles point proved to be the difference as Liberty ended Radford's six-match winning streak with a 4-3 victory in Big South women's tennis action Tuesday afternoon at the RU Tennis Courts.
The Highlanders, who are now 5-3 in one-point matches this spring, fall to 12-5 overall and 2-3 in the league, while the Flames improve to 8-10 and 2-3.
Liberty claimed the doubles point with victories on courts one and three. The Highlanders lone doubles win came from the freshmen duo of Hannah Crawford and Meg Napolitano.
The Flames extended their lead to 3-0 with two-set wins at positions five and one, respectively.
Freshman Gemma Valls put the first point on the board for the Highlanders with a straight-set win at the No. 4 singles position. With her triumph, Valls improved to 13-4 on the spring.
After Brittany Yang forced a third and decisive set, Radford's Mia Drobniak won the third to cut the deficit to 3-2.
Like Yang, Cameron Richard battled back from a set down, but unlike her teammate, she finished off the comeback and clinched the match with a 2-6, 6-4, 6-3 decision over Crawford on court two.
With the match already decided, Radford's Napolitano won her 10th straight and moved to a team-best 15-2 thanks to a three-set win at the final position.
In addition to three singles contests going the distance, this afternoon's dual lasted nearly four hours.
Radford returns to the courts Thursday with a 2:30pm dual at in-state foe Longwood. Liberty will take on Norfolk State tomorrow at 2:30pm.