CORPUS CHRISTI – After a slight rain delay, the Texas A&M - Corpus Christi women's tennis team cruised to their eighth consecutive Southland Conference victory today, 4-1, over Oral Roberts to share a spot with Northwestern State at the top of the conference. After the rain forced the Islanders (16-5, 8-1 SLC) to play indoors at the HEB Tennis Center, the team won four singles matches over the Golden Eagles (3-14, 0-10 SLC). The Islanders have now won 10 of their last 11 matches.
"Give Oral Roberts credit, they were tough and fought us hard," Director of Tennis Steve Moore said. "I feel like our girls struggled a little at first making the adjustments of going from outdoors to indoors, but they kept fighting and kept looking for solutions and sooner or later they figured it out. We still have to keep getting five percent better each week at core fundamental things. We have to start the match with more spirit and energy, but these girls always compete hard. This is an extremely high-character group."
Maider Martin put the Islanders on the board with a straight-set victory in No. 3 singles over Melanie Marlin, 7-5, 6-2. The Islanders then tacked on their second point of the day in No. 2 singles after freshman Judit Vives edged out Marizanne Bouwer in a third-set tiebreaker to win her ninth straight singles match. Vives dropped the first set 6-3 before clawing back to a 6-1 second-set victory. In the third, the Barcelona, Spain native posted a 6-4 victory to improve to 15-1 in singles play and 8-1 in the conference. She also improved her record at No. 2 singles to 3-0.
The Islanders padded their lead to 3-0 after senior Sandra Burges downed Mairead Cleary, 6-0, 6-1, in No. 5 singles to improve to 8-1 in Southland play. The Golden Eagles battled their way to a third-set victory in No. 1 singles to post their first point of the day. Senior Stefania Nicolae lost a tight first-set tiebreaker, 7-6 (4), to Haley Martin, before answering back with a 6-4 second-set win. In the third, the two went neck-and-neck before Martin captured a 6-4 victory.
Sophomore Celia Rodriguez continued her dominance in singles play with her ninth consecutive victory to clinch the match for the Islanders. The Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain blanked Ximena Puentes in the first set, 6-0, before securing a 6-2 second-set victory, to improve to 13-0 at No. 4 singles and 16-3 overall. She also has an impressive 7-1 mark in Southland play this season.
In the final singles match, Venesa Figueroa was leading her first set 5-0 over Nika Munoz when play was called.
The women's team will now embark on their final two conference road matches of the year. First up is a neutral-site match against first-year Southland member Abilene Christian on Wednesday, April 16, in Austin, Texas, at 10 a.m.
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Tennis Match Results
Oral Roberts vs. Texas A&M - Corpus Christi
4/14/2014 at Corpus Christi, Texas
Texas A&M - Corpus Christi 4, Oral Roberts 1
1. Haley Martin (ORUW) def. Stefania Nicolae (AMCC) 7-6 (7-4), 4-6, 6-4
2. Judit Vives (AMCC) def. Marizanne Bouwer (ORUW) 3-6, 6-1, 6-4
3. Maider Martin (AMCC) def. Melanie Marlin (ORUW) 7-5, 6-2
4. Celia Rodriguez (AMCC) def. Ximena Puentes (ORUW) 6-0, 6-2
5. Sandra Burges (AMCC) def. Mairead Cleary (ORUW) 6-0, 6-1
6. Venesa Figueroa (AMCC) vs. Nika Munoz (ORUW) 5-0, unfinished
1. Melanie Marlin/Marizanne Bouwer (ORUW) vs. Judit Vives/Sandra Burges (AMCC) no result
2. Haley Martin/Ximena Puentes (ORUW) vs. Maider Martin/Celia Rodriguez (AMCC) no result
3. Nika Munoz/Mairead Cleary (ORUW) vs. Stefania Nicolae/Venesa Figueroa (AMCC) no result
Oral Roberts 3-14, 0-10 SLC
Texas A&M - Corpus Christi 16-5, 8-1 SLC
Order of finish: Doubles (); Singles (3,2,5,1,4)