Jan. 27, 2007
EAST LANSING, Mich. - The Michigan State women's tennis team improved its record to 4-0 with a 7-0 shutout against Detroit Mercy on Saturday afternoon. The Spartans continued their strong play in doubles against Detroit Mercy, picking up wins in all three positions to take their season record to 11-0 in doubles play. They then went on to sweep singles, winning each of the six matches.
"I think the biggest positive once again was our doubles play," said head coach Erica Perkins. "Against EMU, the girls came out gunning. Pascale (Schnitzer) and Ana (Milosavljevic) are really starting to look good. It's exciting to see everyone execute the things we've worked on practice in matches.
"In the second match, again I was very happy with our doubles play. We mixed up our lineup a bit. I was excited for Christine Milliken, as she got her first dual match victory as a Spartan."
The first doubles match off the court was at No. 1, where Ana Milosavljevic and Pascale Schnitzer played higher in the lineup than usual and remained strong to post an 8-2 win over Detroit Mercy's Annie Moore and Svetlana Flankova.
"Detroit Mercy came out firing in singles, and I thought that despite the long day, our players responded across the board," said Perkins.
In singles, Milosavljevic lead from start to finish in both sets, losing just two games against Davis, posting scores of 6-1, 6-1, at No. 5 to put the Spartans up 2-0. At No. 6, Marianne Eelens followed up a 6-0 shutout in the first set, with a 6-1 win in the second set to defeat Amy Inman and give MSU a 3-0 advantage.
Stephanie Kebler pulled out a 7-5 win in her first set against Flankova at No. 2 and went on to finish the match with a 6-1 second set, giving the Spartans a sweep for the weekend. Pascale Schnitzer posted scores of 6-3, 6-4 in her defeat of Maricevic, while Sarah Andrews was also successful at No. 4, winning in two sets (6-4, 6-3).
In an all out battle at No. 1, Christine Bader fell behind, losing the first set 4-6 before dominating the second set with a 6-1 win. Bader maintained her composure in a super breaker that went back and forth to finish with a 14-12 win over Moore. The win posted the final margin, 7-0.
"In the final match, I was telling myself to relax and work on the things that Erica has been emphasizing this week, especially going across court and moving my feet," said Bader. "It was also nice being at home with the crowd - it's louder.
"The win this morning was amazing," Bader added. "It was huge for our team and good for our confidence. I think we're doing really well as a team, especially with the long day because it's mentally and physically challenging. However, I think we showed that we're tough enough, and we accepted the challenge."
"I thought Christine Bader played unbelievable tennis in her first match today against (Vanessa) Frankowski," said Perkins. "We've been working on a lot of different things with her in terms of game planning, and I think she executed it almost perfectly.
"Ana also looked really good down at No. 5. She's starting to get her confidence back, and playing really aggressively. That's definitely when she's at her best."
Michigan State will face Toledo next Saturday (Feb. 3) in East Lansing. Match time is scheduled for 11 a.m. at the MSU Indoor Tennis Facility.