Men’s and women’s tennis teams fall in weekend matchups

By Brandon Cline, Staff Writer

Both the men’s and women’s tennis teams had matches last weekend, as the men’s team traveled to Seattle to take on the University of Washington and the women’s team made the trek to Pullman to face Washington State University and the University of Idaho.

EWU fell to UW, 7-0, on Jan. 31, dropping their record to 0-4. Eastern won 1 of 9 matches, as the second doubles team of Vuk Vuckovic and Luke Thompson defeated UW’s second doubles team, 6-4. The first doubles team of Robert Dula and Eduardo Martinez took UW’s Emmett Egger and Jeff Hawke to the brink, losing 7-5 in a close set.

Dula was the only player for EWU to push his singles match to a third set, losing to UW’s number one singles player Jake Douglas 0-6, 6-3, 3-6.

Head coach Steve Clark said he was happy with the progress the team is making, saying, “We are happy with the way the guys are progressing. In both the singles and doubles we had some very high quality points. There are plenty of good things to take away from it.”

Dula added onto that, saying, “I definitely think we are playing better as a team. We are doing much better. We definitely believe that we can beat some big-time teams. I think if we played like this at the beginning of the season, we would be doing much better.”

On the women’s side, EWU fell to WSU and Idaho, 6-1, in both matchups, as sophomore Carolina Lopez picked up the Eagles’ only two qualified wins over the weekend.

Slotted in the sixth singles position, Lopez took down WSU’s Holly Monahan in straight sets, 6-2, 7-6. Against Idaho, Lopez dropped her first set to Claire Young but battled back to win the match in a third set super tiebreaker, 3-6, 7-5, 10-7.

“Without question Carolina was the team MVP of the weekend. She showed great determination. She has great ability and she was able to come up big this weekend,” said head coach Dustin Hinson.

Freshman Janaya Smith had not lost a match in January but fell in both of her number one singles matches, 3-6, 3-6, against WSU’s Maria Biryukova and 2-6, 0-6, against Idaho’s Galina Bykova.

The women’s team will make a quick trip to Spokane this weekend to play against Gonzaga on Feb. 7, while the men’s team hosts its first match of the season that same day as it faces Whitworth and Spokane Community College at the Jim Thorpe Fieldhouse.