MT. PLEASANT, S.C. – Elon University women’s tennis extended its winning streak to four matches with a 4-3 victory over College of Charleston on Saturday, March 31, at the CofC Tennis Center.
Olivia Lucas paced the Phoenix (12-9) with a perfect afternoon, earning a win with Erica Braschi at No. 2 doubles and clinching the match for Elon at No. 1 singles with a 7-5, 7-5 win over Helena Nikos. With the win, Lucas is currently on a five match singles winning streak and is also 8-2 in her last 10 singles matches.
“I’m really proud of how the team came together to beat a very strong College of Charleston team,” said head coach Elizabeth Anderson. “Our co-captains, Erica [Braschi], Olivia [Lucas] and Kirsten [Ward], did an outstanding job at leading our team. The whole group came out with great energy and determination in doubles. In singles, Suzanne [Zenoni] competed very well and kept our momentum going quickly. She was followed by great toughness and inspirational resilience from Kirsten, who set up Olivia to clinch the match. Olivia was determined to get the win and had outstanding competitive spirit.”
The Phoenix improves 12-9 overall and moves to 2-0 on the season against CAA opponents with the win on Saturday. Charleston falls to 12-10 overall with the loss.
The Phoenix swept doubles action to take a 1-0 advantage against the Cougars. Braschi and Lucas cruised to a 6-2 win on court two to get things started. Alex Koniaev and Maria Parajaclinched the point on the top court with a 6-2 defeat of the Charleston’s Anastasia Palaska and Christi Woodson. Kirsten Ward and Zenoni completed the doubles sweep with a 7-6 (7-4) victory on court three.
Zenoni began singles action with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Rachel McNeely on court three to put the Phoenix in front 2-0. She extended her singles winning streak to four with the win and is 8-2 in her last 10 singles matches. Zenoni was then followed by Ward’s fifth straight singles win, earning a 6-1, 7-5 victory on the sixth court and giving Elon a 3-0 lead with four singles matches remaining. Charleston got on the board, cutting into Elon’s lead 3-1 as Christi Woodson defeated Braschi 6-3, 6-2 at the No. 2 position.
Lucas clinched the victory for the Phoenix as she topped Helena Nikos 7-5, 7-5 to push Elon ahead 4-1 with two singles matches remaining.
College of Charleston won the final two singles matches of the afternoon in three sets. Turner Yates earned a three-set 3-6, 6-2, 6-4 win at the No. 5 position against Koniaev. Paraja battled against Anastasia Palaska, but fell in a third set tiebreaker 6-7 (5-7), 6-4, 11-9 on court four.
– Elizabeth Anderson earned her 197th win as a head coach on Saturday and is just three away from reaching 200 career victories.
– Olivia Lucas now has 49 dual match singles victories in her career, which ranks sixth in program history.
– Elon extended its winning streak to four matches with the victory at College of Charleston. The Phoenix is also 2-0 this season against CAA teams with wins over the Cougars and UNCW.
The Phoenix returns to action on Wednesday, April 5, with the completion of its three-match road trip at East Carolina. The match is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m.