Sophomore Breanne Smutko clinched the win for the Illini.
March 18, 2011
URBANA, Ill. - The Illini women's tennis team (4-6) snapped a three match home skid with a 5-2 victory over Western Michigan (6-8) Friday night at Atkins Tennis Center. Illinois swept doubles for the second time this season and sophomore Breanne Smutko clinched the match with her eighth win of the season and first at the No. 2 spot.
"I'm extremely proud of this team today," head coach Michelle Dasso said. "Western Michigan is a tough team to play and a very talented team. Playing without Rachael (White) shows the tremendous depth we have in our program. I was so impressed and proud of Annie McCarthy. She battled back after losing the first set and got it done in the third. Across the board, I'm really happy with all the girls, but I definitely want to highlight the way Annie stepped up for us big time today."
McCarthy and Smutko got the ball rolling in doubles with a swift 8-4 win, before first-time doubles partners junior Chelcie Abajian and freshman Allison Falkin collected an 8-4 victory themselves to secure the 1-0 advantage for the Illini. Senior Leigh Finnegan and junior Amy Allin completed the sweep with their sixth win of the season.
In singles, Allin tallied her team-best 15 win of the year and first at the No. 1 spot to give Illinois a 2-1 lead. Allin took over the top spot for White, who sat out so as not to exceed the number of matches allowed per athlete between the fall and spring seasons. The Broncos evened the score with a win at the No. 3 spot, before McCarthy, who made her dual-season singles debut, responded with a come-from-behind victory over Amanda Moccia, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4, to put the Illini back in front, 3-2. No. 117 Smutko sealed the win with a hard-fought victory over Nini Sujashvili, 6-2, 6-4, and Falkin added a three-set win of her own to close out the night for the Illini.
The Illini will head to California next week for their spring break trip to take on host San Diego (March 23) and Fresno State (March 25).
Illinois 5, Western Michigan 2
1. Amy Allin (ILL) def. Maggie Remynse (WMU) 6-4, 6-3
2. #117 Breanne Smutko (ILL) def. Nini Sujashvili (WMU) 6-2, 6-4
3. Maria Nivia (WMU) def. Chelcie Abajian (ILL) 6-2, 7-5
4. Allison Falkin (ILL) def. Jill Pastunink (WMU) 7-5, 6-7 (6-8), 1-0 (10-8)
5. Rachel Denny (WMU) def. Leigh Finnegan (ILL) 6-2, 6-4
6. Annie McCarthy (ILL) def. Amanda Moccia (WMU) 4-6, 6-1, 6-4
1. Chelcie Abajian/Allison Falkin (ILL) def. April Kerr/Amanda Moccia (WMU) 8-4
2. Amy Allin/Leigh Finnegan (ILL) def. Nini Sujashvili/Maria Nivia (WMU) 8-7 (7-3)
3. Breanne Smutko/Annie McCarthy (ILL) def. Maggie Remynse/Jill Pastunink (WMU) 8-4
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (5,1,3,6,2,4)