Saint Leo, Fla. (April 10, 2008) – The No. 29 Saint Leo women’s tennis team (11-8) fell Thursday afternoon to Northwood University (Mich.) at the SLU Tennis Center by the final score of 5-4.
The Lions got off to a slow start in doubles competition, losing two of three matches. The Lions duo of Lina Benkirane (So., Casablanca, Morocco) and Asmaa Tazi (Jr., Casablanca, Morocco) fell to the Timberwolves pair of Ashley Neumann and Julia Goncalves 8-2. In the No. 2 position, the Northwood University team of Darina Berbara and Nicole Kromer defeated Taylor Cleaves (So., Norwell, Mass.) and Shaena Keefe (So., Spring Hill, Fla.) 8-1. The Lions first point of the afternoon came courtesy of the Lions' duo of Veronica Queen (Fr., Valrico, Fla.) and Gina Schifano (So., Tampa, Fla.), as they rolled past the Timberwolves' pair of Malyp Scerri and Raphaela Perisic 8-2.
Singles action faired much better for the Lions, as they split with the Timberwolves 3-3. In the No. 1 singles position Benkirane retired before the match started giving the NU its third point of the day. Saint Leo began the comeback in the No. 3 position, as Keefe took out Goncalves in a hard fought match 6-4, 7-6 (7-5). The Lions rallied for the next two points of the match, as Queen handled Scerri 6-2, 6-4 in the No.4 slot, and Schifano blew past Kromer 6-2, 6-2 in the No. 5 spot. The deciding match between the two schools fell in Northwood’s favor as Perisic won a three-set thriller over Cleaves 6-3, 3-6, 6-4. The Lions have now lost two straight.
The Lions return to the court for their final regular season match against the Palm Beach Atlantic on Monday, April 9 at the SLU Tennis Center. The match is set to begin at 3:30 p.m.