After winning two of its previous three Big Ten matches, the Michigan women”s tennis team”s momentum was brought to an abrupt hault this weekend with losses to Penn State and Ohio State.
Michigan played Penn State yesterday at State College where it lost a close 5-2 match, getting its only points from Fuzesi and Jen Duprez, who won her 10th match of the season.
“It came down to us staying in there, making them play a little longer and forcing them to make mistakes,” Penn State senior Pilar Montgomery said.
Michigan came into the Penn State match after coming off solid play, as the Wolverines were just short of defeating Ohio State, 4-3, in a match where Michigan split the singles matches but lost the always important doubles point.
Ranked No. 27 in the nation and having lost just three matches in the Big Ten, Ohio State is competing for first place in the conference.
Michigan, on the other hand, has recently fallen out of the ITA rankings and is struggling for a bye in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament.
“We have nothing to lose but a lot to win,” senior Szandra Fuzesi said prior to the match.
The team refuses to be written off towards the bottom of the Big Ten standings. There is still a lot of tennis left to be played and the Wolverines gave Ohio State everything they had.
The Buckeyes got things started off by winning the No. 2 doubles spot 8-4. But the Wolverines tied it up when freshman pair Kavitha Tipirneni and Chrissi Nolan won the No. 3 doubles match, 8-5.
After also winning their doubles match the following day against Penn State, the two-some is on a seven-match winning streak at the No. 3 spot. Ohio State broke the tie by winning the No. 1 doubles match 9-8 (5) leaving Michigan just three points shy of winning the lone doubles point.
The Buckeyes went on to win the next three singles matches and the competition. But Michigan refused to quit, winning the remaining three matches.
Next weekend the Wolverines will finish up their home schedule with No. 28 Iowa .