Friday, March 1, 2013

Lutes try winning for a change

After going 0 for 2 years in conference, the women’s tennis team is 4-0

By Brandon Adam, Sports Writer
Pacific Lutheran’s women’s tennis had a tremendous start to the season, winning its first four games while curbing an infamous two-year conference losing streak.
So far, PLU has defeated the regionally ranked Linfield and Pacific University in their season opener and accumulated two more wins last weekend defeating George Fox and Willamette.

Senior team captain Tina Aarsvold had a phenomenal performance in her match in the season opener at Linfield and was awarded Northwest Conference Women’s Tennis Student-Athlete of the Week. Aarsvold is undefeated in both singles and doubles.
Aarsvold, along with her hitting partner, junior Leah Newell, remains unbeaten in women’s No. 2 doubles. The two dominated all four matches winning 8-4 against Linfield, 8-6 against Pacific, 8-2 against George-Fox and shutting out Willamette 8-0.
Their most astounding win out of the four games was against Linfield.
"Linfield has been conference champ eight years," Newell said. "So it was a really big match."
As team captain, Aarsvold said she is pleased how the season has begun and hopes to carry the winning momentum throughout the season.
"It started off really well and we’re just going to keep that going," Aarsvold said.
Other standout players this season are first-years Samantha Lund and Payton McGriff, who set the pace by winning the No. 1 doubles match in Linfield 8-4 and then winning a crucial tie-breaker at Pacific.
McGriff feels the team’s cohesion has been a factor in the team’s strong start.
"We’re all very good at working together," McGriff said. "I thought it was a really great way to start our season off."
Singles tennis is also experiencing some success this season. Sophomore Allison McClure has won three of her four singles matches as well as both of her doubles matches in the season opener.
McClure attributes this season’s winning streak to her team’s work ethic.
"What went well was our preparation going into that match [Linfield]," McClure said. "We went out and we had a lot to prove coming in as the underdog."
Pacific Lutheran hosts Puget Sound this afternoon at 3:30 p.m. before traveling to Oregon to play Lewis and Clark tomorrow at 12:30 p.m.