CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas - The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi women's tennis team picked up a historical win on Saturday with a 4-3 win over the Stephen F. Austin Ladyjacks at the Corpus Christi Country Club. They are guaranteed of their first winning record in conference with a 6-4 mark and one match left to play on Sunday. They are also assured of their highest finish ever in the Southland Conference.
The Islanders are now 9-5 overall and 6-4 in Southland Conference matches. SFA falls to 18-4 on the year with a 6-4 mark as well in league matches.
"I can't tell you how proud I am of the way these girls fought," said Director of Tennis Steve Moore. "SFA is a very good team and very well coached."
"It was every member of the team, the parents, the men's team, everyone just pulling as hard as they possibly could and a tremendous job of coaching by our assistant coaches."
In doubles play, Texas A&M - Corpus Christi took a lead early on as Mirna Cicak and Doris Kuselj dominated their match at the No. 1 position by an 8-1 final. Bianca Discordia and Sandra Burges clinched the point at the No. 2 match, winning 8-6 to give their team a 1-0 lead. Mia Matuszak and Stefania Nicolae completed the doubles sweep at No. 3 with a 9-7 win to close out the first portion of the match.
In singles play, Burges made it a 2-0 start as she won 6-1, 6-4 at the No. 5 position. The Ladyjacks made it 2-1 with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Matuszak at No. 6 while Nicolae put the match on the brink with her 6-4, 6-2 win at No. 4 singles.
After Discordia fell by a 6-4, 6-2 final at No. 3, Kuselj came back from being a set down to win a gritty 5-7, 6-4, 6-2 win at the No. 2 position for the clinching point in the dual match win.
"I have to particularly single out Doris, that girl has an amazing heart," said Moore. "She is playing injured and loses the first set before coming back to clinch the match for us in three sets.
"She really exemplifies the spirit of this team"
Cicak was the last to finish and played a tough three-set match before falling in a super tiebreak at 6-7 (5-7), 7-5, 14-12 at the No. 1 flight.
"I thought Mirna played incredible in doubles and singles today while being a great leader as always," said Moore. "One of the best things about college sports is to see the way teammates to lift each other up and there are a lot of good teammates on this women's team.
"Awesome character from our girls today, to me that's what it is all about."
Since taking over the tennis program, Moore and his assistants have coached the team to the Southland Conference Tournament each year and have improved their league record each year. They will try to continue bettering their position on Sunday when they take on Sam Houston State.
Sunday will also be senior day for Nadia Filmalter and Bianca Discordia as they play their final home match at the Corpus Christi Country Club. Start time is set for 1 p.m. with fans encouraged to come out early to see the seniors honored and support the team as they look for their seventh Southland win.
Tennis Match Results
Stephen F. Austin vs Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
4/16/2011 at Corpus Christi, Texas
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 4, Stephen F. Austin 3
1. Alina Shazhko (SFA) def. Mirna Cicak (AMCC) 6-7 (5-7), 7-5, 14-12
2. Doris Kuselj (AMCC) def. Paola Montuenga (SFA) 5-7, 6-4, 6-2
3. Ksenia Berestetska (SFA) def. Bianca Discordia (AMCC) 6-4, 6-2
4. Stefania Nicolae (AMCC) def. Andreea Enica (SFA) 6-4, 6-2
5. Sandra Burges (AMCC) def. Alice Pacaut (SFA) 6-1, 6-4
6. Meaghan Ocanas (SFA) def. Mia Matuszak (AMCC) 6-3, 6-3
1. Mirna Cicak/Doris Kuselj (AMCC) def. Alina Shazhko/Alice Pacaut (SFA) 8-1
2. Bianca Discordia/Sandra Burges (AMCC) def. Paola Montuenga/Andreea Enica (SFA) 8-6
3. Mia Matuszak/Stefania Nicolae (AMCC) def. Meaghan Ocanas/Ksenia Berestetska (SFA) 9-7
Stephen F. Austin (18-4, 6-4)
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (9-5, 6-4)
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (5,6,4,3,2,1)