April 28, 2011
BOISE, Idaho - Utah State women's tennis ended its season with a heartbreaking, 4-3, loss to San Jose State on Thursday, in the opening round of the Western Athletic Conference Women's Tennis Championships held in Boise, Idaho.
USU worked to gain an early advantage in the match and took an early, 2-0 lead over San Jose State but was unable to close out SJSU. The Spartans would rally to tie the match at 3-3, leaving the No. 1 position of singles play to decide the winner.
USU gained the early upper hand in doubles matches, as senior Hailey Swenson and junior Romina Nedakovic battled to an 8-4 win over San Jose State's Emily Prescott and Olivia Marshall in the one spot. Solidifying the opening doubles point for the Aggies was sophomore Jaclyn West and junior Krisitina Voytsekhovich in the two spot, who emphatically denied the Emily Prescott and Olivia Marshall duo a game en route to an 8-0 shutout. The third match of doubles play was unfinished due to the doubles point being decided.
Swenson continued to play some of the best tennis of her career at Utah State, as she tried to will her team to its first WAC Tournament win in over five years by serving up a straight-set shutout over Prescott, 6-0, 6-0. It was the fifth time this season that Swenson has not given up a game to her opponents, and Swenson recorded her team-high 15th win of the spring season and a 24-7 overall record this year. With Swenson's win, USU jumped out to a 2-0 lead and was looking to close out the Spartans to advance in WAC Tournament for the first time since joining the conference in 2005.
Junior Julie Tukuafu was able to gain a point for the Aggies by winning in straight-sets in the fifth position of singles play. San Jose State would respond by winning three singles matches to tie the match up at 3-3 with only the No. 1 position still playing.
West was battling hard for Utah State in the singles one spot against San Jose State's Sabastiani Leon Chao, and West was able to take an early advantage by winning the first set, 6-3. Leon Chao would not succumb to West in the second set as the two traded point for point, forcing the set into an extra game to decide the winner. Leon Chao would sneak past West in the end of the second set, 7-5, just before the rainfall would pick up and force the delay of the match to move indoors to play the final tie breaking third set. West was unable to recapture momentum in the third set and was defeated, 6-0, by Leon Chao and ultimately gave San Jose State the final point it needed to sink USU.
The Aggies finished the season 11-8 overall, with six of the eight losses were at the racquets of WAC foes as Utah State was unable to capture a conference win this season, ending 0-6.
USU will lose two seniors, Taylor Perry and Hailey Swenson. Returning to lead the Aggies next season will be four juniors, Monica Abella, Brianna Harris, Romina Nedakovic and Julie Tukuafu. This was head coach Christian Wright's 20th season at the helm of Utah State's tennis program.
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San Jose State 4, Utah State 3
Singles competition 1. Sabastiani Leon Chao (SJSU) def. Jaclyn West (USU) 3-6, 7-5, 6-0 2. Hailey Swenson (USU) def. Emily Prescott (SJSU) 6-0, 6-0 3. Chau Truong (SJSU) def. K. Voytsekhovich (USU) 6-4, 6-1 4. Olivia Marshall (SJSU) def. Romina Nedakovic (USU) 6-3, 1-6, 6-2 5. Julie Tukuafu (USU) def. Anna Guzman (SJSU) 6-4, 6-1 6. Sandra Florea (SJSU) def. Brianna Harris (USU) 7-5, 6-0
Doubles competition 1. Swenson/Nedakovic (USU) def. Leon Chao/Florea (SJSU) 8-4 2. West/Voytsekhovich (USU) def. Prescott/Marshall (SJSU) 8-0 3. Truong/Guzman (SJSU) vs. Perry/Tukuafu (USU) 5-6, unfinished
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