GVSU women’s tennis goes 2-1 on road trip

GVL / Emily Frye  
Sophomore Aimee Moccia makes a hard hit against Saginaw Valley State University on Sat. Sep. 12th, 2015.

GVL / Emily Frye Sophomore Aimee Moccia makes a hard hit against Saginaw Valley State University on Sat. Sep. 12th, 2015.

Robbie Triano

After suffering its sixth loss of the season to Detroit Mercy Sunday, March 19, the Grand Valley State women’s tennis team had to bounce back on a weekend road trip.

Even with long bus rides and hotel stays, the Lakers walked away from their three-game weekend with two wins and one loss, bringing their overall record to 18-7.

The No. 43 ranked Lakers grabbed a 7-2 victory over Bellarmine in Louisville, Kentucky Thursday, March 23 and a dominating 9-0 sweep over Southern Indiana in Evansville, Indiana Friday, March 24. No. 13 Indianapolis prevented the Lakers’ attempt of a weekend sweep as GVSU lost 6-3 in Indianapolis Saturday, March 25.

Junior Abby Perkins said the long road trips have the ability to wear out any team, but believes that her teammates do a great job preparing themselves.

“It’s pretty tough being on the road for hours on end while staying and competing at places that we aren’t familiar with at all,” Perkins said. “With that being said, we still do a good job of getting pretty good results to the best of our abilities.”

The Lakers opened the weekend strong against Bellarmine. After taking an early 2-1 lead, GVSU won two of three doubles matches to begin the day. The No. 2 duo of Alexa Sweeney and Aimee Moccia won 9-8 (7-4), while the No. 3 pair of Perkins and Livia Christman won 8-5. GVSU dominated in singles, winning five of six matches to close the day with a 7-2 victory.

GVSU carried the success from Thursday into its contest against Southern Indiana, where the Lakers swept the Screaming Eagles 9-0. Notable victories were: No. 1 Sweeney (6-2, 5-7 (11-9)), No. 2 Moccia (6-1, 6-4), No. 4 Sam Schrepferman (6-4, 6-3) and No. 5 Nicole Heiniger (6-3, 6-2).

“Everyone played well from top to bottom,” Sweeney said. “We needed everyone to bring out their A-game, and they did in the moments we needed them to.”

The Lakers fell to a very tough Indianapolis team 6-3, ending the weekend with a 2-1 record. The No. 2 doubles pair of Sweeney and Moccia won was the team’s only doubles victory, 8-3. GVSU grabbed two singles victories thanks to No. 4 Moccia with a score of 7-5, 7-6 (7-1) and No. 5 Christman with a 6-3, 6-2 victory.

“Indianapolis has a really strong program and recruits girls from places over the world, but we can’t use that as an excuse and just realize playing better ranked teams makes us better in the long run,” Perkins said. “If we played them again at home, we could pull it out. They got us at the end of a long road weekend.”

The Lakers have three matches left in the regular season. The first of their three matches begins at home against Indiana Wesleyan Thursday, March 30.

“We’re excited to finally play back at home,” Perkins said. “More excited than not being in a car for more than five hours.”

After their home match, the Lakers will complete the regular season in Cleveland, Ohio against Indiana University of Pennsylvania Saturday, April 1 and New York Institute of Technology Sunday, April 2.