Women's Tennis Heads to Florida for Two Matches
March 4, 2014
EAST LANSING, Mich. - Nine days since its last match, the Michigan State women's tennis team returns to action this week as it heads to Tampa, Fla., for a pair of neutral site matches. Under the warm Florida sun, MSU (10-2) will square off with Niagara on Wednesday at 9 a.m., and Mercer on Friday at 10 a.m. Both matches will be held on the outdoor Varsity Tennis Courts on the campus of South Florida.
During the Feb. 23 doubleheader, 10 different Spartans found their way into the starting lineup and, in fact, including exhibition matches from that day, all 13 Spartans on the roster saw court time.
Feb. 23 marked the third and final doubleheader on the schedule for MSU. The Spartans are 6-0 this season when playing a doubleheader.
Sophomore Sarah Hellstern has played all five matches on court one of singles and is 3-2 on the season. Combined as a team, Niagara is 16-14 (.533) in singles.
In doubles, Hellstern and freshman Paulina Velasquez are 3-2, including a 2-2 mark on the top court. The Purple Eagles are just 7-8 (.467) in doubles as a team.
This will be the first meeting between the two schools under Coach Jardim. This will also be the first time MSU has faced a MAAC opponent under Jardim.
Sophomore Danielle Jones has played the majority of the matches on singles court one, posting a 5-3 record. Jones has won her last three matches in a row. Combined as a team, the Bears are just 22-32 (.407) overall in singles.
Jones teams with senior Lucie Payrat in the alleys and the duo is 4-1 on the top court. The Bears are 11-11 as a team in doubles, using seven different team combinations in the spring season.
Friday's match will be the first meeting between the schools under Jardim.
MSU is 0-1 all-time under Jardim facing Atlantic Sun opponents. MSU fell to Stetson on March 4, 2012, in a match held in Deland, Fla.
Gruber was a member of Calvary Christian High School's varsity tennis team. Among her high school and junior tennis accomplishments in Florida include: qualifying for the semifinals of the 2010 Jupiter Ocean Girls 18 Dec Designated, semifinalist at the 2010 Florida Open Championships, advanced to the round of 16 at the 2010 USTA National Opens, placed third at the 2010 Agassi National Championships, and she was also voted a two-time captain of her high school team. This season, Gruber is 3-0 in singles play, seeing action on courts five and six. She is also 5-3 in doubles play this season, pairing with Emily Meyers.
Trouillot attended MCA Academy in Miami. She was ranked as high as No. 63 nationally and No. 14 in the state of Florida during her junior days. Some of her other junior accomplishments include: 2012 BMW Girls 18 Super Series Champion, singles quarterfinalist in the 2012 USTA Regional Tournament Segment Girls 18, and third place at the 2012 North Florida Junior Designated Girls 18. This season, Trouillot is 9-2 in singles play during the spring dual season, spending time on courts five and six. She also pairs with classmate Anna Zelechonok in doubles, with the duo going 2-4 on court three.
Bohrer Tied on Top
Meyers One of the Best through Two Years
Best Team Start since 2006-07
As far as what lies ahead for the team, Jardim has noted all year her team has the capabilities and shots to be able to compete with any team, but they just need to continue to have a winning mindset.
"It's up to them," she said on Feb. 23. "There's only so much we as coaches can do. I believe they are good, it's a matter of if they can believe it. If they can think, `OK, this is going to happen,' then anything is possible. We can definitely get out of the bottom of the Big Ten and even through the middle of it. It's in their hands, they go out and play. If they can get their mind into it, anything can happen."
Trouillot's current overall singles record of 16-4 is tied for sixth in school history for most wins by a first-year player.
Erin Faulkner has held down the No. 2 singles court for almost every match this season. Faulkner is 11-6 overall for the season, including a 7-2 mark on court two of spring dual play matches. Faulkner's 11 wins are nearing the eighth spot on the school's all-time wins list for a first-year player. The eighth spot has 14 wins.
Combined for the dual spring season, MSU has a 55-17 record in singles. Faulkner, who is 7-3, and Trouillot, who is 9-2, have accounted for 16 of those wins, which makes up 29%.
Looking Ahead to Big Ten
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