The Slippery Rock women’s tennis team competed at the 2018 ITA Atlantic Regional Championships in Erie, Ohio over the weekend against a tough draw of the best tennis players the region has to offer.
Junior Viola Lugmayr highlighted the weekend for The Rock in the A-Draw singles tournament. Lugmayr advanced to the third round in the A-Draw with victories over Chloe Riley (West Liberty) and Ana Kunic (Salem University), 6-2, 5-7, 10-8 and 7-6, 6-3, respectively. Lugmayr’s run was cut short in the third round after a 6-1, 6-0 defeat at the hands of Julia Newman (Indiana (Pa.)).
Competing with Lugmayr in the A-Draw singles tournament were junior Lacey Cohen and freshman Lois Page. Cohen and Page were unable to replicate Lugmayr’s success and both succumbed to first-round exits.
After reaching the B-Draw singles finals in last season’s tournament, sophomore Lauren Fadden cruised through her first-round match-up with Caisie Adcock (Charleston) 6-3, 6-0. However, the sophomore was bounced in the second round by Naomi Jahr (Mercyhurst) 6-4, 6-2.
Contending in A-Draw doubles play, Cohen and sophomore Olivia Warner were unable to escape the first round against a duo from Charleston. Lugmayr and Page started their blossoming partnership strongly with an 8-7 thriller over a duo from West Chester, however, a tough draw against a duo from Charleston ended the pair’s streak in an 8-5 defeat.
Encouraging results littered The Rock squad as Lugmayr finished the weekend 2-1 in singles play while going 1-1 in doubles action. Sophomore Olivia Warner went 2-1 in singles action although she was unable to win her lone doubles appearance. Page and Fadden both went 1-1 in both singles and doubles play. A tough weekend for Cohen resulted in a 1-2 singles record and a winless run in doubles play.
Head coach Matt Meredith’s squad expected to face off against challenging opponents, the early season tests helping to prepare the women for a rigorous Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) gauntlet in the spring.
Meredith emphasized before the season that while the results mattered, his biggest goal for the early season tournaments was to prepare the women for the bulk of the season to come. Making sure that Page did not play like a freshman when PSAC matches rolled around was high on Meredith’s list.
A 17-15 (.531) record in singles play might look less than stellar on paper but Meredith set up matches with quality opponents, women the team can expect to face in the national competition in the spring, for his team to see just what needed to be improved upon. A 7-6 (.538) record in doubles play comes with the same caveat.
Page finished tournament play with a 2-3 singles record, the experience gained in a few matches with older, more experienced players ultimately showed Page what to expect later in similar PSAC contests. Partnering with Cohen, Page achieved a 1-1 doubles record. A switch to teaming with Lugmayr saw her record blossom to 3-2. Page will get a chance to experience the first team tennis in her career this weekend.
Moving forward, The Rock hosts Daemen College on Sunday, September 23rd for the first team match of the season. For most of the squad, the home match marks the first time back in action at the SRU tennis courts since late March of last year whereas Page will experience her first true taste of tennis at The Rock.