SAINT LEO, Fla. – Prior to Sunday, the Lynn University Fighting Knights had only lost a total of three conference women's tennis matches in their 15 years as a member of the Sunshine State Conference. Today marked the fourth as the 12th-ranked Saint Leo Lions upset the fourth-ranked Fighting Knights 5-4 in SSC action from the Saint Leo Tennis Center on Sunday afternoon.
On the doubles side, despite falling in the No. 1 spot, the unranked No. 2 doubles tandem of Pauline Helgesson and Maria Benkirane started the upsets by defeating the seventh-ranked duo of Andrea Berkova and Kim Przeszlowski, 9-8. The win, claimed behind a crucial 7-5 tiebreak, turned out to be the turning point in the victory.
Also at No. 3 doubles, Coralie Pesenti and Adrianna Daszkiewicz claimed a solid 8-3 victory over Lynn's Ana Kriz and Aleks Vukadinovic to put the match a 2-1 in favor of the Lions heading into singles.
In singles play, 18th-ranked Laura Kemkes snatched a hard-fought 7-5, 6-3 win from Berkova. That win, teamed with Benkirane and Emily Singleton's wins at No. and No. 5 singles tilted the match in the Lions' favor and Head Coach James Bryce could only lean back and smile as he knew the Lions would prevail.
The victory pushed the Lions to 4-1 overall and gives them their first conference decision of 2013. Lynn falls to 3-1 and 2-1 in the SSC as they also suffer the first SSC defeat to a school not named Barry University.
The Lions will have less than 24 hours to prepare for their next SSC opponent as Florida Tech comes into the Saint Leo Tennis Center on Monday afternoon. The match is scheduled to get underway at 3:00 p.m.
#12 Saint Leo 5, #4 Lynn 4
02/17/13 at Saint Leo, Fla. (Saint Leo Tennis Center)
|1. #10 Val Confalonieri (LUW) def. Coralie Pesenti (SLW) 6-0, 6-1|
|2. #15 Ioana Ivan (LUW) def. Pauline Helgesson (SLW) 6-4, 6-3|
|3. #18 Laura Kemkes (SLW) def. Andrea Berkova (LUW) 7-5, 6-3|
|4. Maria Benkirane (SLW) def. Kim Przeszlowski (LUW) 6-2, 1-0, retired|
|5. Emily Singleton (SLW) def. Ana Kriz (LUW) 6-4, 6-3|
|6. Alina Jane (LUW) def. Adrianna Daszkiewicz (SLW) 2-6, 6-4, 10-3|
|1. #3 Val Confalonieri/Ioana Ivan (LUW) def. Laura Kemkes/Emily Singleton (SLW) 8-3|
|2. Pauline Helgesson/Maria Benkirane (SLW) def. #7 Andrea Berkova/Kim Przeszlowski (LUW) 9-8 (7-5)|
|3. Coralie Pesenti/Adrianna Daszkiewicz (SLW) def. Ana Kriz/Aleks Vukadinovic (LUW) 8-3|
|Lynn 3-1, 2-1 SSC; National ranking #4|
|Saint Leo 4-1, 1-0 SSC; National ranking #12|
|Order of finish: Doubles (1,3,2); Singles (1,4,2,3,5,6)|