April 19, 2014
YSU 6, UIC 1
CHICAGO – The UIC women’s tennis team (8-12, 5-3 HL) suffered a 6-1 loss to Youngstown State (11-11, 6-2 HL) in its final match of the regular season on Saturday as it honored its four seniors Jana Knoppe, Natalia Kuvakina, Mariana Palacios and Kathryn Sharples at the Flames Outdoor Tennis Courts. Freshman Veronica Lacerda picked up the lone win for the Flames with a straight-set victory at No. 6 singles.
The Penguins took the first point in doubles after winning at No. 1 and 3. Sharples and Palacios fell to Marta Burak and Dominika Lackova, 8-5, at the top position, while Kuvakina and junior Keti Mebuke dropped at 8-4 decision to Margarita Sadovnikova and Carolyn Jesko at the three spot. Knoppe and sophomore Ann-Sophie Hahn had their match at No. 2 go unfinished despite being up 7-3.
Into singles, Lacerda garnered the only victory of the day for UIC after taking down Jesko, 7-6 (6), 6-3, at No. 6. Palacios won her first set against Burak at No. 2, but fell into the third set, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2. Hahn additionally went to three sets after taking the first but lost to Nehel Sahni, 4-6, 6-3, 6-1, at No. 5.
The final three wins for Youngstown State came in straight sets. Sharples suffered a 6-3, 6-2 loss at No. 1, Knoppe was defeated by Lackova, 7-5, 6-2, for her first loss at No. 3 this season and Mebuke was bested by Annina Brendel, 7-5, 6-0, at No. 4.
Despite losing three conference matches this season, the Flames will now fight for their 18th-consecutive title at the Horizon League Championship, set for April 25-27, at the University of Michigan Tennis Center in Ann Arbor, Mich.