The Student News Site of Florida Gulf Coast University

Eagle Media

Eagle Media

Eagle Media

Women’s Tennis Falls Short in ASUN Conference Championship Match

Lexi Harbach/FGCU Athletics

Ending their season in heartbreak, the FGCU women’s tennis team fell short in their conquest to win their first ASUN Championship Tournament title. After making an unexpected run to the finals, toppling over the second and third-seeded teams, the Eagles lost to the Stetson University Hatters in the tournament’s final round. 

FGCU clinched their spot into the 2024 ASUN Championship Tournament after defeating the Eastern Kentucky Colonels on April 7. The Eagles would split their next two matches, losing against the Stetson University Hatters 4-3 on the road. The Eagles concluded the regular season with a 7-0 win against the University of Central Arkansas Sugar Bears at home.

Entering the first round, the Eagles were set to play the third-seeded University of North Florida Ospreys on April 19. The Ospreys came into the tournament with a 12-9 record, losing their last matchup against the Eagles 5-2. FGCU looked to do the same to start tournament play.

In the doubles matches, freshman Paloma Goldsmith and junior Isabella Colmenares won 6-1. Junior Lola Glantz and senior Jordana Ossa followed this by winning 6-3 to give the Eagles the doubles point. 

Story continues below advertisement

Sophomore Amelia Kopel won both of her sets with ease, 6-0 and 6-2. Senior Fanny Norin followed that up by winning her sets, 6-1 and 6-4. Ossa gave the Eagles the clean sweep in the singles matches, winning her sets 6-2 and 6-3 to advance them to the tournament’s semifinal round.

After defeating the Ospreys 4-0, the Eagles were set to play the Lipscomb University Bisons on April 20. The Bisons entered the tournament with a 15-5 record, which earned them the second seed and a first-round bye. FGCU was looking for redemption after losing to the Bisons 5-2 during the regular season.

Despite Goldsmith and Colmenares winning their doubles match 6-2, the Eagles lost their other two doubles matches, which allowed the Bisons to secure the doubles point.

The Eagles were undeterred by this. Ossa and graduate student Ida Ferding bounced back to win their singles matches. Colmenares continued this momentum with 6-3 and 7-6 victories in her sets to put the Eagles ahead. However, the Bisons would make a comeback, as two of their players won their singles matches in a third set, leaving the score tied at three with one more match to go. 

After both of Goldsmith’s first two sets went to a seventh point, she split those sets. She lost her first set 7-6 but won her second 7-5. This left everything on the line in the third set. Goldsmith came out victorious, winning the set 6-2 to advance FGCU to the ASUN Tournament  Championship with 4-3 match win.

In the ASUN Tournament Championship final, the Eagles faced the first-seeded Stetson University Hatters. The Hatters carried the most momentum out of any team in the tournament, as they had not lost a conference game since last year’s loss to the Ospreys in the 2023 ASUN Conference Championship Tournament.

The Eagles looked to make history as the first sixth-seeded team to win the tournament. They entered this match as the first sixth-seeded team to make the championship round since the Mercer University Bears in 1999. 

FGCU started off slowly as Stetson dominated the doubles matches, clinching the doubles point in the process. Momentum started to briefly swing in the Eagles favor as Kopel was able to win her sets 6-4 and 6-0 to give FGCU a point, but the rest of the Eagles struggled in their matches. 

Colmenares took her match to a third set, winning the first set 6-2 before losing 6-3 in the second set. She went on to lose her third set 6-3, which gave the Hatters the winning point they needed to take home the 2024 ASUN Championship in a 4-1 victory.

The Eagles ended their season with a 14-10 record, which is a slight drop in their record after going 16-7 the season prior. FGCU has made the championship round in six of the last nine years, but they have not been able to take that final step toward winning an ASUN Women’s Tennis Championship.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All Eagle Media Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *