No. 21 DePaul Breezes Past Bearcats
CHICAGO - The No. 21 DePaul women's tennis team shined in its return to the Lakeshore Athletic Club as the Blue Demons swept Cincinnati, 7-0 in BIG EAST Conference action on Friday.
DePaul (12-3, 2-1 BIG EAST) controlled the match by sweeping the doubles point and continued its dominating play in singles action. The Blue Demons did not lose a set and lost just 19 games in singles play while Selma Salkovic did not lose a game in the number two position.
"Selma continues to be our emotional leader and is unrelenting on the court," head coach Mark Ardizzone said following the win.
"We started sluggish but really finished strong," Ardizzone added.
Even with the sluggish start, the Blue Demon pair of Cali Gustafson and Kirsten Gambrell swiftly defeated Caitlin O'Gara and Abby Mayo, 8-2 in the number three position. DePaul clinched the doubles point when its No. 13 pair of Anna Redecsi and Salkovic followed suit with an 8-2 win in the first match. It was Redecsi and Salkovic's 23rd victory this season and 44th since being paired up in 2008.
Up, 1-0, the Blue Demons played to their home crowd as spirited cheers from the balcony applaud as each singles match finished and DePaul got closer and closer to its third straight win and second in BIG EAST play.
"It was nice to have familiar faces in the crowd," Ardizzone said after returning to Lakeshore for the first time since January. "Anytime you play a BIG EAST team you want to put forth your best effort.
Gustafson was the first to finish her singles match as the sophomore topped Abby Mayo, 6-1, 6-0 in the sixth match. Salkovic, who tallied her 65th career singles victory, was the next to finish before Sandra Zmak clinched the match with a 6-1, 6-1 win over Elise Woulfe in the fourth spot.
With the match already in hand, Redecsi handed Ksenia Slynko her second loss in the number one position this season. The DePaul senior overtook the Bearcat ace 6-3, 6-2.
Katarina Milinkovic and Gambrell completed the Blue Demon sweep with wins in the number three and five positions, respectively.
DePaul has less than 24 hours of rest before it takes on West Virginia on Saturday at 1 p.m.
"We have to play better tomorrow if we are going to derail a very good West Virginia team who is on a good role," Ardizzone added. The Mountaineers have won 10 of their last 11 matches and are 4-0 in BIG EAST play.
No. 21 DePaul 7, Cincinnati 0