AKRON, Ohio – The Akron women's tennis team kept things rolling with its 19th straight victory in a 4-3 win over Miami (Ohio) on Sunday afternoon at the Outdoor Tennis Facility on the UA campus.
The win marks the first regular season victory over the RedHawks in program history.
The Zips improve to 20-2 (4-0 MAC) with the win, while Miami (Ohio) falls to 7-9 (2-1 MAC).
Akron has won 20 matches for the first time since the 2011-12 season.
"Today is certainly a wonderful day for our program historically, with our first ever win against Miami during the regular season, but we know that we still have a great deal of work to do in order for our end goals to be achieved as a team. I am extremely proud of this team though, as they continue to show amazing heart and determination," said head coach Brandon Padgett.
"Now we must turn our focus toward Northern Illinois. I sincerely hope the community comes out and watches this team play and gets behind this group. They are fun to coach, fun to be around and truly enjoy playing the game,".
In doubles action, the duos of junior Carli Knezevich (Austin, Texas)/senior Karolina Maksimova (Mogilev, Belarus) and junior Ariadna Blinova (Riga, Latvia)/junior Sophia Geier (Burgebrach, Germany) picked up wins to help the hosts clinch the doubles point.
Knezevich/Maksimova held on for a 7-6 (5) win over Anzhelika Shapovalova/Nelli Ponomareva, while Blinova/Geier took a 6-3 decision against the Redhawks' duo of Hannah Shteyn/Anastasiia Vasiukhina.
"Doubles was extremely important today as it always is. We came out flat at the start and got down 3-0 on courts one and two, but after our assistant coach Ariel Morton lit a fire under both teams, they really responded. That energy is what carried us through and secured the doubles point," added Padgett.
At the No. 2 singles spot, Blinova registered a straight-set victory (6-4, 6-2) over Shapovalova.
Sophomore Luisa Echeverry (Cali, Colombia) picked up a 6-2, 6-0 win over Vasiukhina in No. 5 singles action for the Zips.
At the No. 6 singles spot, senior Shannon Newnes (Romford, London) remained unbeaten in singles action this spring with a 6-4, 6-7 (3), 6-3 victory against Shteyn.
"Shannon clinched the match for us for the second conference match in a row and she's clinched three out of four conference wins up to this point. As a senior, I couldn't imagine a better way to have your final season play out," said Padgett.
The Zips will host Northern Illinois on Friday, April 7, at 1 p.m.
AKRON 4, MIAMI (OHIO) 3
Akron Outdoor Tennis Facility
April 2, 2017
1. Nelli Ponomareva (MU) def. Sophia Geier, 6-4, 2-6, 6-3
2. Ariadna Blinova (UA) def. Anzhelika Shapovalova, 6-4, 6-2
3. Andreea Badileanu (MU) def. Rita Pedroso, 6-3, 2-6, 6-0
4. Emily Struble (MU) def. Karolina Maksimova, 6-3, 6-1
5. Luisa Echeverry (UA) def. Anzhelika Shapovalova, 6-2, 6-0
6. Shannon Newnes (UA) def. Hannah Shteyn, 6-4, 6-7 (3), 6-3
Order of Finish:
Doubles— 2, 3, 1
Singles— 5, 4, 2, 3, 6, 1
Akron (20-2, 4-0 MAC)
Miami (Ohio) (7-9, 2-1 MAC)