Northwood Edges FSU In Women's Tennis

FSU's Tiffany Rheynard gets ready in Tuesday's match against Northwood (Photo by Rob Bentley)
FSU's Tiffany Rheynard gets ready in Tuesday's match against Northwood (Photo by Rob Bentley)

Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University women's tennis team came close to upsetting archrival Northwood on Tuesday (Sept. 21) before suffering a narrow 5-4 setback in a key Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) regular-season battle at the FSU Racquet and Fitness Center.

The previously unbeaten Bulldogs dropped to 4-1 overall and in league action while the seven-time defending conference champion Timberwolves improved to 3-0 both overall and in the GLIAC.

Northwood took a 2-1 lead following doubles play and then managed to split the six singles flights versus FSU, including a thrilling three-set victory at the number two position.

Ferris senior Alina Stanila (Alexandria, Romania) teamed up with junior Melissa Flowers (Orland Park, Ill./Carl Sandburg) to post a 9-8 (5) victory at second doubles for FSU's lone win in tandem play.

The Timberwolves earned victories at both first doubles and third doubles by identical 8-5 scores.

In singles action, Stanila earned her second victory of the afternoon with a straight-set (6-3, 6-0) win over NU's Svenja Stephan at the number one flight.  

FSU also received a 7-6 (6), 6-4 decision from senior Tiffany Rheynard (Kalamazoo, Mich./Gull Lake) at the third spot in the lineup against Nikoletta Kaposzta.

Finally, Ferris' final singles triumph came at the bottom of the lineup where junior Natalie Diorio (Byron Center, Mich.) topped NU's Nicole TenBrink in two sets by a 6-0, 6-1 count.

The closest match of the day was a three-setter at second singles with Northwood's Charlotte Sevin beating FSU senior Amy Ingle (Battle Creek, Mich./Hastings) 7-6 (4), 3-6, 6-3 in the match.  Ayan Kobayashi and Anne-Sophie Goujet were also victorious for NU at the fourth and fifth singles positions, respectively.

The victory was Northwood's ninth consecutive series' triumph over FSU dating back to the spring 2004 season. However, the score resulted in FSU's closest margin of defeat to the Timberwolves since an identical 5-4 loss in the 2004 GLIAC Tournament Championship Match (10/23/04) at Midland, Mich.

The Bulldogs will try to get back on track by traveling to Michigan's Upper Peninsula for two matches this weekend.  FSU begins a three-match road stretch by visiting Lake Superior State on Saturday, Sept. 25, for a 10 a.m. (EDT) GLIAC encounter in Sault Ste. Marie.  Ferris then takes on Michigan Tech Sunday, Sept. 26, with match time also set for 10 a.m. (EDT) in Houghton.

Singles competition
1. Alina Stanila (FS) def. Svenja Stephan (NU) 6-3, 6-0
2. Charlotte Sevin (NU) def. Amy Ingle (FS) 7-6 (7-4), 3-6, 6-3
3. Tiffany Rheynard (FS) def. Nikoletta Kaposzta (NU) 7-6 (7-6), 6-4
4. Ayan Kobayashi (NU) def. Melissa Flowers (FS) 6-1, 6-2
5. Anne-Sophie Goujet (NU) def. Tabitha Simpson (FS) 6-0, 6-1
6. Natalie Diorio (FS) def. Nicole TenBrink (NU) 6-0, 6-1
Doubles competition
1. Svenja Stephan/Nikoletta Kaposzta (NU) def. Amy Ingle/Tiffany Rheynard (FS) 8-5
2. Alina Stanila/Melissa Flowers (FS) def. Charlotte Sevin/Anne-Sophie Goujet (NU) 9-8 (8-5)
3. Ayan Kobayashi/Nicole TenBrink (NU) def. Tabitha Simpson/Natalie Diorio (FS) 8-5