Coyote Women’s Tennis opens spring season with 7-0 shutout

The University of South Dakota women's tennis team opened the 2012 spring season in convincing fashion, with a 7-0 win over Northwestern College (IA) Saturday afternoon at the Four Seasons Indoor Tennis Center in Sioux City.

The Coyotes came out with three wins doubles as the top Coyote duo of sophomore Michelle Elkin and senior Alena Sergeychik downed Fgrankic Escez and Terrey Odena 8-4.

"There was a very competitive match at No. 1 as it was a tight up until 4-3 and we then got some rhythm and made some shots," head coach Malcolm Gilreath said. "Doubles was very competitive, and that was good to see as it will be important as our season progresses."

South Dakota cruised in the next two doubles matches as senior Shadi Soleymani and junior Veronika Makashov downed Kisa Benzel and Kelly Korver 8-2, while freshman Nina Barudzic and junior Marina Kiefer won 8-1 for a 1-0 lead in team scoring.

Singles were all Coyotes, too, Elkin won 6-1, 6-1 at No. 1 over Escez, while the Coyotes posted a total of four 6-0 set wins.

"Northwestern was an improved team, but we also have three new players in our lineup and the depth really showed," Gilreath said. "They have a new No. 1 singles player – a freshman, but Michelle (Elkin) played really well. I also felt our freshmen stepped up with Nina and Yamini Reddy at the bottom of the lineup as they worked hard and continue to improve."

The Coyotes travel to Drake University for three matches Jan. 28-29 as South Dakota is scheduled to battle Northern Illinois and Southern Illinois-Edwardsville (Jan. 28) and play at Drake Jan. 29.

South Dakota 7, Northwestern College 0

Doubles

1. Elkin/Sergeychik (USD) def. Escez/Odera (NC) 8-4

2. Soleymani/Makashov (USD) def. Benzel/Krover (NC) 8-2

3. Barudzic/Kiefer (USD) def. Koews/Stork (NC) 8-1

Singles

1. Michelle Elkin (USD) def. Fgrankic Escez (NC) 6-1, 6-1

2. Alena Sergeychik (USD) def. Terrey Odera (NC) 6-0, 6-1

3. Shadi Soleymani (USD) def. Kisa Benzel (NC) 6-0, 6-2

4. Nina Barudzic (USD) def. Kelly Korver (NC) 6-1, 6-1

5. Veronika Makashov (USD) def. Hannah Stork (NC) 6-0, 6-2

6. Yamini Reddy (USD) Jami Koews (NC) 6-1, 6-0

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