By: Billy Owens, Staff Writer
Towson finished its regular season with a hard-fought 5-2 win over Bucknell at the Towson Center Courts Sunday morning.
The Tigers came into the match riding a four-match winning streak having posted wins over Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) rivals Drexel and Delaware and over local opponents University of Maryland, Eastern Shore, and Coppin State.
“We had a good, strong finish,” Head Coach Doug Neagle said. “This is our fifth win in a row, so we’re going to take confidence from that.”
The Tigers swept all three doubles matches to take an early 1-0 lead over the Bison.
Number one doubles Nicole Shakhnazarova (a Towerlight contributor) and Barbora Vasilkova defeated Maria Cioffi and Michele Urbinati 6-3. Number two doubles Jane Shusterman and Lucy Williams defeated Emilie Bush and Stephanie Pino 6-1, and number three doubles Renate van Oorschodt and Lucy Gloninger defeated Mishi Papich and Melissa Parks 6-3.
“The doubles was critical today,” Neagle said. “It really set the tone.”
The Tigers stayed strong in singles, earning four tough wins to clinch the overall victory.
Number three Vasilkova defeated Urbinati 6-4, 6-2, number four A.J. Gomer defeated Madeline Melch 6-1, 6-2, and number five Sophie Lesage defeated Papich 6-1, 1-6, 6-2.
Number one Shakhnazarova came back from a set down to defeat Cioffi 2-6, 6-4, 7-6 (2), closing out a very close final set in a deciding tiebreak. Bucknell posted two match wins after Towson had clinched the match, as Lisa Jouravleva defeated number two Williams 6-4, 6-2, while Pino defeated number six van Oorschodt 6-4, 4-6, 6-0.
The Tigers ended their regular season with a 13-8 record which included a 3-4 record over CAA opponents.
Towson heads to Elon, North Carolina, for the 2016 CAA Women’s Tennis Championship, hosted at the Jimmy Powell Tennis Center on the campus of Elon University from Thursday to Sunday. Seeded sixth, the Tigers face third seed James Madison in a quarterfinal matchup. Friday at 1 p.m.