Warriors Fall to Nuggets

Submitted by: Christy Cain - March 28th, 2015

 

Stratman tennisBy Christy Cain

(SANTA BARBARA, Calif.) The Westmont women’s tennis team (9-7, 7-2 GSAC) had an impressive day of play on the Abbott Tennis Courts yesterday against Xavier University (La.)(12-8). Despite the ultimate 7-2 team loss, the Warrior women have so much to be proud of and excited about. As any athlete knows, numbers only tell part of the story.

“We lost 2-7 against a top ten team but we still think we can win and are so close to breaking through,” opened head coach Kendyll McManigal. “Xavier team was in the semis at Nationals last year and we performed really well at certain spots throughout the day.”

The women’s team opened with doubles play yesterday afternoon. At the number one spot was the most promising duo Lauren Stratman and Ines Costamagna who took on Caroline Vernett and Simone-Alyse Ewell. The Warriors were able to cap off a good first win by a score of 8-1 and get the day started on an exciting note.

On court number two Hayley Standness and Alyson Meyer were overcome by Nour Abbes and Carmen Nelson with a final score of 8-1. To cap off doubles play, Emily Keach and Grace Davis suited up and were looking for some redemption after yesterday’s tough loss against Arizona Christian. While the duo battled against Nelson and Flowers, they were not able to solidify a win and dropped the set 8-2.

“We came out super solid at number one doubles. Everything went their way,” explained McManigal. “Number two and three were much tougher but had lots of close games. Girls carried that into singles. We knew it would be tough across the board and that we would have to dig in, grind and be mentally tough from start to finish.”

The women entered into singles play with a team score of 1-2 and began the final battles.

The toughest match of the day was undoubtedly at singles number one. Stratman took the court against the number one player in the country (Nour Abbes) and battled it out the entire time, but the Nuggets held the eventual 6-4, 6-3 win. “Number one singles was an incredible match. Lauren took on #1 player in the country Nour. She played flawless tennis and Lauren hung with her. Lauren is capable of beating her and was so thankful for the opportunity to play her,” reflected McManigal.

Costamagna went to war on court number two in the second singles position against Caroline Vernet. Ines fought hard the whole time and came out on top with the Warriors second and final win of the day with scores of 2-6, 7-6 (7-5), 10-6. “We won at number two singles. Ines fought so hard and was incredibly calm and collected at big points,” said McManigal. “She had a point penalty against her for taking too long in the restroom and was defaulted a game in the second set. Instead of being frustrated, that fueled her and she was determined to pull it out. The third set was ten point breaker because the match was decided and Ines, played great tennis. Coming to the net on crucial points and mixing up her shots. She started cramping and still found a way to win. We talked about leaving it on the courts today and these girls did just that.”

Things did not get any easier on singles number three court. Hayley Strandness was matched up against Carmen Nelson who won in three with finals of 6-1, 4-6, 7-5. “At number three singles, Haley lost 5-7 in the third set. That is very good against this highly ranked team. Haley and I kept saying that today was her today and even though she lost, she competed so well, didn’t get discouraged and was about to beat that top player,” closed out coach.

The final singles matches of the day did not get any easier as the Nuggets gained momentum. Ewell defeated Grace Davis 6-2, 6-3. Flowers defeated Meyer 6-3, 7-5 and Nelson wrapped up the day with a 6-2, 6-3 win over Westmont’s Emily Keach.

The Warriors are on the road as they today at 2 pm at Point Loma Nazarene in San Diego, Calif.