Huskies’ comeback fails in loss to Buffalo

By Joseph Segreti, Sports Reporter

DeKALB –NIU women’s tennis lost its second straight Mid-American Conference matchup as its late rally fell short in a close loss to the University at Buffalo to a final score of 4-3. 

The Huskies put together a late rally in the final two matches of the day after trailing 3-1. Freshman Isabella Righi and sophomore Angelica Ross both fought through three sets against Buffalo’s junior Mariana Carvajal Torres and fifth-year Gabriella Akopyan.

Righi came out with a win for NIU while Ross came up short in her match against Akopyan. 


The Huskies earned one of their three points by winning two out of the three doubles matches. Sophomore Erika Dimitriev and freshman Nataly Ninova swept their match, finishing with a score of 6-0. 

Junior Diana Lukyanova and sophomore Reagan Welch won the second doubles match for the Huskies, securing a 7-5 victory that gave NIU the doubles point. 

“That helped us a lot and that will give you a chance to win against a good team like this,” said NIU women’s tennis head coach Eric Burns. “If you don’t get the doubles point, you’re in big trouble against a team like this.” 


The Huskies dropped three of their first four matches in singles, with Dimitriev defeating Buffalo fifth-year Pia Schwartz. Dimitriev won both sets by a score of 6-4. 

Ross dropped her first set 6-3 then came back in the second set and won 6-4, forcing a tie-breaking set. 

After taking a commanding 4-1 lead over her opponent in the final match, Ross needed just two games to secure a win. Ross’s opponent, Akopyan, rallied back from the early deficit and won five straight games to win the match.

Righi lost her first set to Torres by a final score of 6-1. In the second set, Righi faced a 5-1 deficit  after the first six games but battled back and overcame the deficit with a 7-5 win to force a tie-breaking set. Righi went on to win the final set 6-4. 

“It’s really easy to just go away and she couldn’t find the court for the first 90 percent of those first two sets,” Burns said. “Then all of a sudden it just clicked and she started making balls and gaining confidence.”


NIU’s next match will be at noon Friday as they will travel to Muncie, Indiana to take on Ball State University at the Cardinal Creek Tennis Center.