March 24, 2007

Eagles Win Second in a Row, Defeat Utah State 5-2

March 24, 2007

The Eastern Washington University women's tennis team moved to 2-0 on its six-match, 3,137-mile road trip with a convincing 5-2 road win over Utah State. The Eagles won 2-of-3 doubles contests before claiming four of the six singles contests. Two of those singles wins came in dramatic fashion, as both saw Eagles lose first sets and rally to win the second and third stanzas.

The key match in doubles play came on the third court, where Marie Demerath and Amanda Mankovits outlasted Dee-Dee Nelson and Bridgette Strickland, 9-8. Also earning a doubles win was the No. 2 tandem of Kerstyn Dolack and Kasey Knox, as the pair toppled Courtney Anderson and Brianna Harris, 8-4.

In singles play, earning straight-set wins for Eastern were Knox in the first position and Rachel Berger, who played on the fourth court. Knox won a close contest with Anderson, 7-6, 6-4, and, with three straight wins, moved to the .500 mark on the season at No. 1 singles (7-7). She is 10-9 overall in 2006-07 (including fall play). Berger has now won two straight and 5-of-7 following her 7-5, 6-4 victory over Nelson.

The Eagles to earn three-set victories were Eastern's Nos. 5 and 6 players, Mankovits and Demerath, respectively. Mankovits outlasted Lauren Monson, 4-6, 7-6, 6-4, to end a three-match losing streak and to earn her first three-set victory of the season. Demerath also rallied from a one-set deficit for a 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 victory over Strickland. That win moved Demerath's current winning streak to three and was also her first of the season to go the full three sets.

The Eagles (5-9) have now hit the five-win mark for just the third time since the 1996 team went 7-15. Previous occurrences came in 2006 (7-13) and 2000 (5-7).

The match was the first in 38 days for the 4-6 Aggies.

Eastern returns to Big Sky Conference play with a 1 p.m. PT contest on Sunday (March 25) versus Idaho State. The Bengals will be playing their only match in a 27-day span and just their fifth contest of the season. Idaho State is 1-3, 0-1 in Big Sky play after losing to Northern Arizona, 7-0, on March 10 in its last match played.

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Eastern Washington at Utah State
Eastern Washington 5, Utah State 2
March 24, 2007, at Logan, Utah

Singles competition
1. Kasey Knox (EWU) def. Courtney Anderson (USU), 7-6, 6-4
2. Erin Monson (USU) def. Iliana Petrova (EWU), 6-0, 6-1
3. Brianna Harris (USU) def. Kerstyn Dolack (EWU), 6-2, 6-2
4. Rachel Berger (EWU) def. Dee-Dee Nelson (USU), 7-5, 6-4
5. Amanda Mankovits (EWU) def. Lauren Monson (USU), 4-6, 7-6, 6-4
6. Marie Demerath (EWU) def. Bridgette Strickland (USU), 4-6, 6-4, 7-6

Doubles competition
1. Erin Monson/Lauren Monson (USU) def. Iliana Petrova/Rachel Berger (EWU), 8-2
2. Kasey Knox/Kerstyn Dolack (EWU) def. Brianna Harris/Courtney Anderson (USU), 8-4
3. Amanda Mankovits/Marie Demerath (EWU) def. Dee-Dee Nelson/Bridgette Strickland (USU), 9-8

Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (2,3,4,1,6,5)

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