Bulls reach .500 with win over Huskies
After a week off, the women's tennis team rebounded from a loss last week when it met up with Northern Illinois on Saturday.
The Bulls (6-6, 2-2 Mid-American Conference) defeated the Huskies (7-10, 1-5 MAC), 5-2, and did so in impressive fashion, as they never trailed in the match.
Buffalo opened the afternoon by taking two of three doubles matches from NIU to capture the opening doubles point. The duo of senior Denise Harijanto and junior Aleksandra Petrova, who are currently ranked regionally, defeated the Huskies pair of Brooke Forsberg and Emily Rogers, 8-4, out of the No. 1 doubles spot.
The Huskies quickly responded as Kathryn Friedman and Sara McLaughin took the second doubles match, 8-5, over the Bulls combo of freshman Tamara Markovic and senior Anna Subenkova.
In an 8-4 victory, the Bulls pair of junior Diana Popescu and senior Diana Toia topped the Huskies team of Kelly Phillips and Stephanie Okuma to clinch the doubles point for Buffalo.
The Bulls used the momentum they built during doubles play and converted it in their singles matches. Harijanto, Petrova and Popescu took the first three singles matches in convincing fashion to take a commanding 4-0 lead in the match.
Playing out of the No. 1 singles position, Harijanto defeated Friedman in straight sets, 6-1, 6-1, for her third MAC victory this season. She improved her record on the season to 14-13. Petrova followed suit in the second singles match to defeat NIU's Emily Rogers, 6-1, 6-3.
Popescu shut out Brittni Fausett of the Huskies, 6-0, in the first set and breezed through the second set, 6-3, to take the third singles match of the day. The Huskies captured their first singles match of the day when McLaughlin defeated Toia, 6-0, 6-1, out of the No. 4 slot.
Markovic bounced back for the Bulls as she defeated Phillips, 6-3, 6-0, for the last Buffalo victory of the day. The Huskies' Martina Schnapp defeated Anna Subenkova, 6-3, 7-6 (4), to close out the meet.
Huskies head coach Ryun Ferrell was rather impressed with Buffalo's top performers.
"We fought hard today, but came up short in doubles," Ferrell said. "Buffalo had a very strong showing at the top of its lineup in singles play."
The Bulls look forward to a weekend at home against conference opponents Miami (OH) (11-6, 3-0 MAC) and Ball State (7-10, 1-3 MAC) on Friday and Saturday. The back-to-back matchups will wrap up the Bulls' regular season home schedule. The first match against Miami is scheduled for 1 p.m. on Friday.