Ball State women’s tennis snaps losing streak, dominates Northern Iowa

<p>Junior Peyton Gollhofer gets ready to return the ball during the match against Buffalo on April 2, 2017 at the Cardinal Creek Tennis Center. <strong>Terence K. Lightning Jr., DN File</strong></p>

Junior Peyton Gollhofer gets ready to return the ball during the match against Buffalo on April 2, 2017 at the Cardinal Creek Tennis Center. Terence K. Lightning Jr., DN File

Ball State women’s tennis managed to get back into the win column, taking down the Northern Iowa Panthers, 7-0, at home. One of the common things this season for the Cardinals has been doing well in doubles play, and coach Max Norris saw them carry over that play into singles today.

“[All year], we’ve played pretty decent doubles, and a lot of teams we play against are very good doubles teams and really go for their shots and do great things,” coach Norris said. “But then to have as much juice and composure to start off singles and throughout singles, that was one thing that after our Eastern Michigan match … Whatever happens in the doubles point, having positivity, having steadiness and having composure.”

Another attribute that Norris was impressed with today was the determination to battle back against the odds, especially in his senior Peyton Gollhofer.

“We got to face adversity at certain points, and we’re forced to find ways to come through,” Norris said. “Peyton at one point was down in her second set and faced a couple of set points and fought back. That was nice to see us have to fight through some adversity.”

This win puts the Ball State's record at 8-8 overall on the season, with an opportunity to get back over .500 this Sunday against Mid-American Conference opponent Toledo at home. In regard to this coming Sunday, Norris wants to see a few variables carry over to put the team on top.

“I think the biggest thing that I want to carry over is our physicality and consistency in singles,” Norris said. “I saw at various spots we were moving better, we were playing with more balance in the corners, more balance coming forward the net, just little things like that… For me, that’s really, really important to move that into Sunday’s match, we need to be able to last longer in points, last longer in games, and last longer in sets, and that’s our goal.”

The Toledo Rockets are the next challenge for the Cardinals, which presents an opportunity to notch the first conference win on the season for Ball State. Toledo currently sits at 11-5 overall, with a 1-2 mark in MAC matches. Players to watch out for are going to the doubles tandems of Colleen O’Brien and Deedee Leenabanchong, who have yet to lose a doubles match on the season. First serve is scheduled for 1 p.m. at the Northwest YMCA in Muncie.

Contact Chance Iles with comments at cwiles@bsu.edu or on Twitter at @ChanceIles.

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