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Women’s tennis sees highs and lows in Indiana trip

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Photo by Maggie Bean/Marquette Images

Photo by Maggie Bean/Marquette Images

Photo by Maggie Bean

Photo by Maggie Bean

Photo by Maggie Bean/Marquette Images

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It was a tale of two sweeps for the Marquette women’s tennis team, who swept Butler for its first conference win of the season before being swept by Notre Dame the following day.

The Golden Eagles opened up the trip against a struggling Butler squad and came out with one of their best performances of the season. All three of the doubles pairs won, with senior Ana Pimienta and junior Erin Gebes winning in the No. 1 spot, 8-1. The No. 2 pairing of senior Ali Dawson and junior Aleeza Kanner and No. 3 pairing of sophomore Diana Tokar and freshman Paula Tormos Sanchez each won 8-3 in their doubles match. With the three victories, Marquette headed into singles play leading 1-0.

Marquette won every match in singles play, with only Tokar at No. 3 and Dawson at No. 4 losing a set. Pimienta at No. 1 set the tone with a solid 6-2, 6-2 victory, while Gebes at No. 2 suffered a scare in the second set but finished strong with a 6-2, 7-5 win. Tokar suffered a setback in her second set, but closed out her singles win with a clean slate, winning at No. 3 6-4, 3-6, 6-0. Dawson at No. 4 lost a tightly contested second set but blasted her opponent with a dominating final set, winning 6-2, 6-7, 6-0. No. 5 Tormos Sanchez went the distance in the second set but won her point 6-3, 7-6. To complete the sweep, senior Vanessa Foltinger replaced Kanner in singles play and promptly won in decisive fashion 6-3, 6-2.

“We came out fast in our doubles matches, which is always a good sign for us,” coach Jody Bronson told GoMarquette.com. “The team played smart tennis and the result in doubles showed. Our singles matches were hard-fought, just like the doubles victories… This is the type of win that helps us continue to build our confidence as a team and individually as well.”

With the sweep in hand, the Golden Eagles travel to No. 36 Notre Dame, which was coming off a big 6-1 win against North Carolina State. The Fighting Irish showed why they were one of the best teams in the nation with its 7-0 sweep of Marquette.

Doubles play started the rough outing for Marquette, where Notre Dame won the No. 2 and No. 3 spots. Dawson and Kanner lost at No. 2, 8-2, while at No. 3, Tormos Sanchez/Tokar fell, 8-4. Marquette’s best opportunity for a win in doubles play came in the No. 1 spot, where Pimienta/Gebes were tied with their counterparts 4-4 when Notre Dame won the No. 3 spot and the doubles point.

Notre Dame dominated the singles play with no player losing a single set for the Fighting Irish. Tokar had the toughest day of all Golden Eagles at No. 3, where the sophomore failed to win a single game in her 6-0, 6-0 loss. Pimienta won the most games, ultimately falling 6-3, 6-2 at the No. 1 spot. Gebes fell at No. 2 6-0, 6-3, and Dawson fell at No. 4 6-1, 6-3. At No. 5, Tormos Sanchez lost 6-1, 6-2, and replacing Kanner again was Foltinger, who lost 6-0, 6-1.

The women’s team will end its five-game road trip with an Easter Sunday matchup against Florida Gulf Coast April 5.

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