Women’s tennis dominates at Drake

Huskies win all but one singles match at Bulldog Invitational to wrap up fall play

By Waleed Alamleh, Sports Reporter

The NIU women’s tennis team finished its fall portion of the 2021-22 season on a high note, as it won 20 matches this weekend at the Bulldog Invitational hosted by Drake University. 

The Huskies got great play from sophomores Diana Lukyanova, Anastasia Rakita and freshman Reagan Welch, with all three going 3-0 and helping the Huskies win 16 of 17 singles matches. 

“We are so proud of the effort this weekend,” head coach Eric Burns said in an NIU Athletics press release. “I’m pretty sure I’ve never had a team only lose one singles match for the whole weekend at an invite. Just exceptional play across the board.”

The Huskies opened up the three day event in dominating fashion, winning six of the seven singles matches on Friday. The doubles partners performed just as well, as NIU swept through the doubles matches on the day winning all three matches over the University of Nebraska Omaha’s duos. 

The Huskies solid play would continue into Saturday. NIU started the day by dropping two of their three doubles matches, but would respond in a big way by sweeping through all six of their singles matches. 

NIU closed out the Bulldog Invitational Sunday by again winning all of their singles matches. The only concern for the Huskies on Sunday, and the weekend in total, is the play of the doubles partners. All three pairs that competed for the Huskies Sunday lost, bringing the teams double record to 4-5 for the Bulldog Invitational. 

Coach Burns sees the growth in his team and is excited for the upcoming spring season. 

“We still aren’t there yet but we did improve this weekend,” Burns said. “All in all, a great and positive way to end our fall season. Now we set our sights on the spring and continue to work to see where we can go with this team.” 

The Huskies will resume their season on Sunday, Jan. 23, when the Huskies travel to Champaign-Urbana to take on  Eastern Illinois University.