The Elon University women’s tennis team completed two convincing victories against the Hampton University Pirates (3-6) and the Methodist University Monarchs (1-3) during its Saturday afternoon doubleheader at the Jimmy Powell Tennis Center.
Elon only dropped two matches this afternoon, combining for a 12-2 total record on the day, to move to 8-3 on the season.
In a dominant day for the Phoenix, all eight players were able to get in the rotation. Head coach Elizabeth Anderson said she believes that the strength of competition that Elon faced today will help the Phoenix moving forward.
“It was just for us to be really disciplined and focused and continue working on each individual player's games and doubles as well,” said Anderson. “I think they all made a lot of good improvements today.”
The first overall-seeded doubles pairing for the Phoenix, which consists of junior Lizette Reding and senior Sibel Tanik, quickly won the first doubles match and did so by the nature of a 6-0 golden set. The duo is now 6-3 in doubles on the season. Freshman Helen Sarikulaya and sophomore Miray Konar clinched the first point for the Phoenix by winning their match 6-1.
Graduate student Olivia Archer only dropped one game en route to a 6-0, 6-1 victory in an incredibly quick time. Archer is also now just five singles matches shy of tying, six from breaking the Elon singles win record of 68. Senior Julie Ball soon followed with a 6-1, 6-2 win bringing the Phoenix up to three points.
Freshman Madison Cordisco then triumphed 6-0, 6-2 to clinch the match for Elon with her first victory since late January. Reding had the fifth and final singles victory against the Pirates.
Elon only dropped two matches, both of which came against Hampton. Tanik fell in a tight tiebreak against Hampton’s Angelina Blinova, losing 7-4. Freshman Helen Sarikulaya had her opponent doing the splits and going for tough balls throughout the entire day but lost in a contentious and heated match tiebreak that ended in a 10-4 loss. Elon won 5-2.
After a brief intermission, the Phoenix took the court to face the Monarchs. The Monarchs entered today only having played three matches on the season.
Elon made sure to not let Methodist’s record deceive them. The Phoenix made short work of the Lions and did not allow a single player or doubles duo to win more than two games against them in the process of a 7-0 sweep.
Senior Shauna Galvin was able to get in on the action against Methodist. This marked the season debut for Galvin. She clinched the victory for the Phoenix with an impressive 6-0, 6-0 win in singles and notched a 6-0 doubles victory with Archer. Galvin now holds a 20-5 career singles record.
Galvin said she was excited to be back at Elon after several matches on the road and to be competing at the Jimmy Powell Tennis Center again.
Although the Phoenix is just under halfway through the season, all eyes are on April’s Colonial Athletic Association Tournament. Anderson’s squad is hungry, and Galvin said the players are treating every day and every practice as an opportunity to learn, grow and prepare for postseason play.
“This is a really crucial time to stay disciplined and make sure we don’t get a little bit lackadaisical in our practices because we’ve played so many matches, but instead be looking towards conference now that we’re in March,” Galvin said.
Anderson said she is looking forward to the time off and is excited to be able to get some quality practices in before their next match, but also is thinking about how to prepare for the CAA tournament.
“We’re excited to use every match to build and continue to get better so that we’re ready for the tournament,” Anderson said.
Elon will be off next week until March 11 when it faces the Davidson College Wildcats (4-5) at the Jimmy Powell Tennis Center. This will be the fourth contest in a six-match homestand for the Phoenix.