Buckeyes Fall at No. 11 Northwestern, 5-2
April 15, 2012
COLUMBUS, Ohio - The Ohio State women's tennis team dropped a 5-2 decision at No. 11-ranked Northwestern Sunday afternoon in Evanston, Ill. The Wildcats (15-7, 8-1) won the doubles points and the first four singles matches off the court for the Big Ten Conference victory. For the 61st-ranked Buckeyes, juniors Gabby Steele and Fidan Manashirova posted victories, with Steele winning in a super tiebreaker and Manashirova rallying for a three-set victory.
Next up, Ohio State (8-14, 3-6 Big Ten) returns to Columbus for its last regular-season home match when it hosts Michigan State at 2 p.m. at the Ohio State University Varsity Tennis Courts on Senior Day and Kelsey Haviland will be honored following the match. The Buckeyes wrap up the regular season at Michigan Sunday. Ohio State will then serve as host for the 2012 Big Ten Tournament April 26-29.
The Wildcats swept doubles to open the match with a 1-0 lead. Belinda Niu and Kate Turvy won on court three, 8-3, over Manashirova and Kelsey Becker and on court one Linda Abu Mushrefova and Veronica Corning defeated Steele and Haviland by the same score to clinch the point. The match at No. 2 went to a tiebreaker, with the Wildcats' Nida Hamilton and Brittany Wowchuk prevailing over Kara Cecil and Kelsey Dieters, 8-7. The Buckeye duo trailed, 7-3, but won four-consecutive games to tie the match at 7-all, holding serve to tie the score. In the tiebreaker Ohio State was down 4-2 but rallied to deadlock the score at five points each. Northwestern then held serve to capture the final two points.
Northwestern won the first four singles matches off the court, all in straight sets, to earn the team victory. Niu defeated Haviland at No. 1, followed by a victory by Stacey Lee on court six over Tiffany Dittmer for a 3-0 lead and No. 62-ranked Wowchuk topped Cecil at No. 2 for the Wildcats' fourth team point. After Mushrefova defeated Dieters on court four, the Buckeyes prevailed on courts five and three for the 5-2 final.
On court five, Steele defeated Hamilton in a super tiebreaker, winning the first set in a tiebreaker before dropping the second set, 7-6 (4), 1-6, 1-0 (8). At No. 3, Manashirova rallied after dropping the first set against Corning for a 1-6, 7-5, 6-4 victory.
Ohio State vs Northwestern