Cougars Capture Four Singles Matches To Defeat Huskies, 4-3

March 18, 2007

PULLMAN, Wash. - Washington State University captured four singles matches en route to a come-from-behind, 4-3, victory over rival Washington in a woman's tennis match Sunday afternoon at the Simmelink Tennis Courts at Hollingbery Fieldhouse.

With the win the Cougars improve to 11-7 on the season, 1-4 in Pacific-10 Conference play, while the Huskies fall to 1-10, 0-5 in conference action.

With the Cougars holding a 3-2 lead freshman Anastesia Opata at No. 6 singles clinched the team victory as she posted a 6-0, 6-1 win over Washington's Lauren Summers. It marked Opata's fourth dual match victory of the season as her record improved to 4-3.

'It's always great beating our biggest rival,' said WSU head coach Lisa Hart. 'Our team chemistry is at an all-time high and I am impressed with our player's tenacity as they battled from behind.'

The Cougars dropped the opening doubles point as Washington earned victories at both No. 1 and No. 2 doubles. WSU's No. 3 team of Aleksandra Cekic and Aleksandra Stefanova were off first after earning an 8-3 win over Allison Rainey and Lauren Summers. At No. 2, UW's Tara Simpson and Melinda Wong evened the match at 1-1 with an 8-4 win over Amy Toth and Opata. At No. 1, the Washington pair of Mathilde Cor and Joyce Ardies clinched the doubles point with an 8-3 win over Ekaterina Burduli and Marjolein van de Ven.

WSU needed to capture four of six singles matches to earn the victory and it began with Toth's 6-2, 6-0 win over Simpson at No. 2, evening the match at 1-1. Cekic put the Cougars in the lead with a 6-7 (7), 6-2, 6-2, win over Wong at No. 4.

Burduli then increased the WSU lead to 3-1 as she rallied from a set down to defeat Cor at the No. 1 spot, 3-6, 6-4, 6-4. The Huskies drew closer as Ardies earned a tough three-set win over van de Ven, 6-1, 1-6, 6-4, at the No. 3 spot.

That set the stage for Opata, who wasted little time in securing the Cougars second-straight victory over their rivals, the first time that has happened since the 1996 season. The final match of the day went to Washington as Rainey outlasted Stefanova in two tough sets, 7-5, 7-5, at No. 5.

The Cougars are next in action Sunday as they host the Oregon Ducks in a Pac-10 Conference match at the Simmelink Tennis Courts. Match time is set for noon.

WASHINGTON STATE TENNISWashington State 4, Washington 3March 18, 2006Simmelink Tennis Courts at Hollingbery FieldhousePullman, Wash.

Doubles:No. 1 Mathilde Cor/Joyce Ardies (UW) def. Ekaterina Burduli / Marjolein van de Ven (WSU) 8-3No. 2 Tara Simpson/Melinda Wong (UW) def. Amy Toth / Anastesia Opata (WSU) 8-4No. 3 Aleksandra Cekic / Aleksandra Stefanova (WSU) def. Allison Rainey/Lauren Summers (UW) 8-3Order of finish: (3, 2, 1)

Singles:No. 1 Ekaterina Burduli (WSU) def. Mathilde Cor (UW) 3-6, 6-4, 6-4No. 2 Amy Toth (WSU) def. Tara Simpson (UW) 6-2, 6-0No. 3 Joyce Ardies (UW) def. Marjolein van de Ven (WSU) 6-1, 1-6, 6-4No. 4 Aleksandra Cekic (WSU) def. Melinda Wong (UW) 6-7 (7), 6-2, 6-2No. 5 Allison Rainey (UW) def. Aleksandra Stefanova (WSU) 7-5, 7-5No. 6 Anastesia Opata (WSU) def. Lauren Summers (UW) 6-0, 6-1Order of finish: (2, 4, 1, 3, 6, 5)
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