Tennis leaves Florida on high note
The South Dakota State men's and women's tennis teams won
its spring trip finales in Florida versus Montana State-Billings and Florida A&M,
On the women's side, SDSU rattled Florida A&M by a score of 6-1 to close out its trip on Friday.
In doubles, the Jacks won the team point with wins at No. 1 and No. 2 doubles.
Ffion Davies and Jenny Blackburne dominated at the top spot with an 8-0 win versus Bethany Holt and Symone Townsend. It was the duo's second shutout of the season. SDSU secured the team point when Tacy Haws-Lay and Brooke Henry secured and one-break lead and it held up in an 8-5 win versus Elysia Ortiz and Stephanie Miller.
The Lady Rattlers won the No. 3 doubles match, but it was not enough and the momentum was on SDSU's side.
In singles, the Jacks won five of the six matches, all decided in straight sets.
Florencia Magni defeated Holt in convincing fashion at No. 1, 6-2, 6-2. Davies matched that feat versus Alexis Dean at No. 2, as well. Blackburne needed a tiebreaker to win the first set, but cruised in the second versus Townsend at No. 3, 7-6 (7-4), 6-2.
Although SDSU only needed three singles wins, Beatriz Souza and Tiffany Filipovich also won at No. 4 and No. 6, respectively. Souza lost only two games en route to a 6-0, 6-2 win versus Ortiz, while Filipovich was the only Jackrabbit to shut out her opponent, a 6-0, 6-0 win versus Shani Williams.
The win propelled SDSU's record to 8-7. Next up for the Jacks is a weekend in Kansas City, Mo., for three conference meets. SDSU opens the weekend on Thursday, March 14, versus Fort Wayne. Meet time is set for 2 p.m.
The SDSU women's team enters conference play having won six of its last eight meets.
On the men's side, SDSU stung Montana State-Billings 4-3 in its spring trip finale on Friday.
In doubles, SDSU won by a great margin at all three positions to secure the team point.
Andrea Boglić and Parker Lawley tied for the largest margin of victory at No. 1 with an 8-1 win versus Navin Marimuthu and Christian Fischer. Mateus Moreia and James Thorp matched that feat in the second spot versus Brandon Beardsley and Josh Hedderig.
In singles, the two teams split the six matches, which was enough for an SDSU win. Three matches needed a third set of some kind to determine the outcome and the Yellow Jackets won two of three, but it was not enough.
The Jacks played without Boglić in the top spot, but Moreira was more than serviceable at No. 1. Moreira played a full third set versus Marimuthu after the two split the first two sets 6-3, 3-6. In the third and decisive set, Moreira was not to be denied, winning -1.
H. Pereira did not need a third set, as he surrendered the fewest games of any men's singles player. H. Pereira defeated Brad Knutson 6-0, 6-2 at No. 3. SDSU's final win came from the last spot, as L. Pereira battled for a 7-6 first-set win versus Josh Hedderig, but closed out the match in shutout fashion, 6-0.
Montana State-Billings won at No. 2 and No. 5 in a third set of some kind and added a straight-set win at No. 4, but it was not enough.
The win upped SDSU's record to 5-8. Next for the Jacks is one week off before a conference weekend in Kansas City, Mo. SDSU opens the weekend versus Kansas City on Friday, March 22.
The SDSU men's team has won five of its last eight meets.
"Today was a great way to end our week in Florida," head coach Michael Engdahl said. "It can be a long week with a lot of long days, but I thought we handled it well. We had a couple moments today where you could tell we were running out of gas, but we were able to focus through it. We should all be feeling good headed into Summit League play in the next two weeks."