Women’s tennis serves 7-0 wins against Olivet Nazarene
Story by Sarah Combs, Contributing writer
The Racers’ quick turnaround from Friday to Saturday didn’t bother Erin Patton, senior from Memphis, Tennessee, who said she didn’t think fatigue played a part in her performance during Murray State’s victories.
After solidifying her position last season as the third person in Murray State women’s tennis history to have an undefeated season, Patton ended last season with a record of 14-0 and said she’s entering this season with complete confidence in both her team and individual performance. The senior’s only loss last season was in the NCAA tournament. Patton said she was able to her focus during the two matches to earn wins.
“I came out to dominate and do what I came out here to do,” Patton said.
Patton and the Racers opened the season with a 7-0 win against Evansville on Friday and came back to defeat Olivet Nazarene University 7-0 Saturday at the Kenlake Tennis Center.
The fast turnaround didn’t concern Coach Jorge Caetano and his team’s ability to perform. Caetano made sure his team got plenty of rest and remained healthy for the match against the Tigers. Murray State started the match against the Tigers by winning the doubles point but struggled with earning the singles matches.
“We got the doubles point again; for singles it was tough,” Caetano said. “The first four matches were very tough. That’s the main thing with these girls; they like to compete.”
Caetano said the goal is to win the conference title while enjoying the journey to get there.
“We have won back-to-back conference titles, so they know what it takes,” Caetano said. “The five new ones embrace that very well, and they just want to win.”
Megan Blue, senior from Ontario, Canada, has occupied the No. 1 spot for the team, delivering results both days, winning singles matches against Evansville and the Tigers and pulling together with Amina Hadzic, freshman from Esbjeg, Denmark in doubles against the Tigers.
“It’s good, I think, for all the other girls to know they can rely on her as No. 1,” Caetano said.
Caetano said the Racers still have fundamentals to focus on for the upcoming week heading into their match against Louisville.
“We work on fundamentals [through the week],” Caetano said. “We work on strategy so we can be ready for the next weekend.”
The Racers swept the Tigers Saturday in singles with wins from Blue; Patton; Hadzic; Haily Morgan, freshman from Anthem, Arizona, Jeanne Masson, freshman from Dinard, France and Suzanne Stoltz senior from Brisbane, Australia.
Hadzic and Blue won their doubles competition 6-2 with Masson and Alina Schibol, junior Hamburg, Germany, following suit with a 6-0, resulting in the Racers’ point.
The Racers head to Louisville, Kentucky for a match against the Cardinals at 4 p.m. Sunday.