Women’s teenis falls to Ohio and Ball State

By Thomas Hiley III

In its last weekend of the season, the women’s tennis team had some highs and lows as it faced the Ball State Cardinals (14-10, 5-3 MAC) and Miami of Ohio RedHawks (11-12, 7-1 MAC).

The Huskies lost both matches 5-2 to put them 14-10 on the season and 0-8 in MAC play, failing to qualify for the MAC Championships.

Nelle Youel won her 27th singles match to pass Natacha Koprivica’s school record (26) for most single season victories.

“It’s exciting that I [have the record] but I didn’t know until my coach told me, and it’s an honor,” Youel said. “This record is nice, but it would be more exciting if [we] were playing in the MAC Championships as well.”

The match Youel played to determine if she would tie or own the record was against Nimisha Mohan. She easily won the match in two sets 6-4, 6-0, and from what she said she was just trying to get the win.

“It was another day,” Youel said. “I thought more on the match than the record. I felt calm and kept it together and grinded it away and broke her confidence. She knew it was going to be a hard match.”

Against the Cardinals on Friday, Youel/Arantza De La Torre won their doubles match, defeating Courtney Wild/Courtney Earnest 8-4, but NIU ended up losing the last two doubles matches. In singles, No. 5 Cristina Alvarez defeated Bethany Moore in three sets, and No. 1 Youel won against Wild 6-2, 6-2.

Facing the RedHawks on Saturday, the Huskies lost 5-2. The only wins came from No. 1 and 2 singles Youel and Haley Dekkinga.

The Huskies might not have finished the way they wanted to, but they were able to have a winning season at 14-10, which they haven’t had since the 2002-03 season. They won 14 dual matches, the most since 1997, which saw 15.

“We played amazing, and I’m proud of the way we did,” said head coach Ryun Ferrell. “Nelle won more matches than any women’s tennis player in NIU history.”

With the team not playing in the MAC Championship they will be working to get ready for next season. Ferrell said he will be having a meeting on Monday with his players.

“We[’re] going to tell them what [is] expected and get ready for the summer,” Ferrell said. “I got everybody [coming] back and it’s going to be an awesome path.