In any sport, Ball State and Indiana hate losing to each other. But in many sports, reality is a hard pill to swallow, especially for the women's tennis team as it suffered a 6-1 setback to the Hoosiers.
Right from the start, the Hoosiers (7-0 ) took advantage of the younger Cardinal team. In all three doubles matches, the Cardinals (1-1) fell behind early.
"We seemed to be pretty intimidated," head coach Kathy Bull said. "I finally got our No. 1 and No. 2 teams settled down, but not No. 3. But I just hate to see all our teams start off so poorly."
Singles play continued to show the dominance of the Hoosiers, as they continually used lob shots to keep the slower Cardinals away from the net. No. 1 singles player sophomore Melissa Roach saw tough action against Amanda Field, one of the top-ranked singles players in the Midwest.
"She was just so consistent," Roach said. "Kathy kept telling me good ideas and things to do, and I felt I did them. I just couldn't execute those things."
At No. 2 singles, freshman Leisa Brooks and IU's Karie Schlukebir went back and forth for more than two hours before Brooks fell in the third set.
Bull said she was happy with how the team battled in its matches, but said the Cardinals could have stayed more focused.
"I think we complimented our opponent's shots more than we should have," Bull said. "There were times we should have buckled down a little more."
With two weeks off before its next match, Bull said the team is "going back to the basics and conditioning."
"All this week, I am going to work individually with each player to work the little problems out," Bull said. "It's like I told the team -- we're going back to camp."