Women's tennis plays regionally-ranked Rhodes tight but falls 5-4

Women's tennis plays regionally-ranked Rhodes tight but falls 5-4

The Oglethorpe women's tennis team played regionally-ranked Rhodes tight Sunday afternoon at the Dunavant Wellford Tennis Center on the campus of Memphis University School in Memphis, Tennessee. However, the homestanding Lynx asserted themselves in doubles play to give them a one-match edge that they wouldn't relinquish. With the loss, the Stormy Petrels fell to 8-6 overall and 1-5 in SAA play.

The Petrels got a huge victory in doubles as junior Hannah Dattilo and senior Shannon Cruz defeated a regionally-ranked tandem in the top-line match, 8-5. Senior Delaney Abood and sophomore Lisette Phillips had a chance to give the team a 2-1 lead headed into singles as they led 7-4 at No. 3 and had a match point. Rhodes staved it off, but the Petrels had three more match points up 7-5. The Lynx staved off all of those, as well, though, and Rhodes forced a tiebreak which they won 7-5.

Rhodes had the 2-1 lead instead and they used it to their advantage. They got three quick wins at Nos. 2, 3 and 4, clinching the dual match 5-1. 

Dattilo won her match due to injury retirement, though, and the Petrels earned a pair of victories in single eight-game sets after the Lynx clinched. Phillips won 7-5 in a tiebreak at No. 6, while junior Elizabeth Bielicki took her match 8-5 from the No. 5 slot.

"Our doubles play almost gave us a big spark, coming close to taking a 2-1 lead," said Oglethorpe head coach Peter Howell. "Rhodes is a very tough team, though. If we play like we did today against Berry next week, we'll put ourselves in good position in that one."

The Petrels wind up their regular season schedule with that visit to Mount Berry on Friday. They'll take on the Vikings at 2:30 p.m.