Saint Leo, Fla. (April 9, 2008) – The No. 29 Saint Leo women’s tennis team (11-7, 3-5 SSC) was handed its first loss in their last six matches Wednesday afternoon at the SLU Tennis Center after being swept 9-0 by No. 7 Rollins College Tars (18-1, 7-1 SSC) in the final SSC match of the season.
The Tars, as in the previous meeting, swept through Saint Leo in doubles competition. The Lions’ duo of Lina Benkirane (So., Casablanca, Morocco) and Asmaa Tazi (Jr., Casablanca, Morocco) were halted of any comeback attempt dropping their match to Marnie Mahler and Roshni Luthra 8-6 in the No. 1 spot. The No. 2 duo of Shaena Keefe (So., Spring Hill, Fla.) and Taylor Cleaves (So., Norwell, Mass.) fell 8-4 to Silvia Frandji and Anastasiya Shevchenko. The No. 3 position didn’t fair much better for the Lions, as the Rollins pair of Margaret Junker and Allie Steele rolled past Veronica Queen (Fr., Valrico, Fla.) and Gina Schifano (So., Tampa, Fla.) 8-0 to complete the first part of the sweep.
The Tars also blanked the Lions in singles competition. In the No. 1 singles spot, Benkirane dropped her two-set match to No. 27 Mahler 6-2, 6-3. Tazi lost a valiant second set against Shevchenko eventually dropping the match 6-3, 7-5 in the No. 2 spot. The Tars’ Luthra made quick work of the Lions’ Keefe winning 6-1, 6-2 in the No. 3 position. In the No. 4 spot, Rollins’ Junker swept Queen in both sets 6-0, 6-0. Schifano gave the Lions their best chance at picking up a point in the match but dropped a decisive third set to Frandji, losing the match 6-0, 3-6, and 7-5. Sydni Katz finished off the sweep of the Lions defeating Cleaves 6-4, 6-3.
The Lions return to the court Thursday, April 10 at the SLU Tennis Center for a non-conference match-up with Northwood University (Mich.) at 3:00 p.m.