ABILENE - After starting Southland Conference play a little more than a week ago with three straight road victories, the Abilene Christian women's tennis team Saturday suffered its second single-point home loss in as many days to a league foe.
Yesterday's heartbreaker came against the defending tournament champions from Northwestern State, and today it was the Ladyjacks of SFA who came back from a point down to escape the Eager Tennis Pavilion with a 4-3 triumph.
The victory moved SFA ahead of ACU in the Southland standings by one game as the Ladyjacks improved to 4-1 against the league and to 8-6 overall, while the Wildcats fell to 3-2 and 11-4. Northwestern State and McNeese State continue to lead the league with undefeated marks of 5-0 and 4-0, respectively.
The McNeese Cowgirls will come to Abilene in two weeks (April 5) for a Southland Conference doubleheader with Nicholls State. Match times are 10 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.
Today the Wildcats played exceedingly well in doubles after losing two of three yesterday to the Lady Demons. Senior Emily Conrad and Nada Marjanovic wrapped their 8-1 win at No. 3 over Denise Maxl and Macarena Acosta in about a half hour, and some time later Micah and Kaysie Hermsdorf completed their 8-5 win at No. 1 over Malena Gordo and Julia Lorca, which gave the home team a 1-0 lead going into singles.
Unfortunately, the Wildcats' momentum did not last long as ACU lost four of its six first sets and soon afterward back-to-back decisions at No. 2 and 6 that put SFA ahead at 2-1. Sophomore Nada Marjanovic pulled the Wildcats back into a short-lived 2-2 tie with a 6-4, 6-3 win at No. 5 over Andrea Ternera, but SFA's Valeria Terentyeva gave her team the lead for good as she managed to prevent a third set against Erin Walker at No. 4 with a 6-1, 7-6 victory.
Terentyeva surrendered a significant lead to Walker midway through the second set, but won the final two points after going down 6-5.
Lorca came back several times as well during her match-clinching win at No. 3 over Kaysie Hermsdorf. The Ladyjack junior from Lyon, France dropped the first set, 6-3, but won the second-set tiebreaker before rallying from deficits of 2-1, 3-2 and 4-3 in the third set to win 6-4.
Micah Hermsdorf won her match at No. 1 against Gordo, 6-7 (9), 6-3, 6-2 after the dual had been decided. Micah's win lifted her dual record to 12-3, which includes a 4-1 mark against Southland No. 1's.
In doubles, Micah and her sister are an impressive 13-1 at the top position.
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