OXFORD, Ohio - Ninth-seeded Northern Illinois, playing with its complete lineup for the first time since the start of league play, made a statement in the first round of the Mid-American Conference Women's Tennis Tournament, downing eighth-seeded Akron, 4-0, and advancing to tomorrow's Quarterfinal Round to face top-seeded Western Michigan.
Northern Illinois, which lost to the Zips, 4-3, earlier in the season, took the early advantage by claiming the doubles point behind victories at first and second doubles. The Huskie tandem of Megan Brooks and Lilian Asuaje made short work of the Zips at second doubles, sweeping to an 8-0 victory. Up 5-4 in both first and third doubles, NIU finished strong and clinched the decisive point with an 8-4 victory by Jenny Edner and Nao Uememura at first doubles.
The Huskies, who played with just four players over much of the MAC season due to illness, carried their momentum onto the singles courts, winning the first set in four of six matches. Edner quickly downed Akron's Tanya Gombera, 6-0, 6-0, at first singles and Lilian Asuaje earned an 6-3, 6-4 victory at third singles to place the Huskies on the brink of victory. The decisive point came at fourth singles, where Megan Brooks collected a 6-3, 6-4 win over Alyssa Carlson.
NIU improved to 5-15 overall and advances to face Western Michigan, which downed the Huskies 6-1 last week, tomorrow at 2 p.m. Akron ended its season with a 5-16 record.
Northern Illinois 4, Akron 0
No. 1 - Edner/Uememura (NIU) def. Larson/Kerry Langworthy (UA), 8-4
No. 2 - Brooks/Asuaje (NIU) def. Gombera/Carlson (UA) , 8-0
No. 3 - Nagel/Delgadillo (NIU) vs. Sherlock/Berry (UA), 7-6 (DNF)
No. 1 - Jenny Edner (NIU) def. Tanya Gombera (UA) 6-0, 6-0
No. 2 - Dora Delgadillo (NIU) led Jennifer Larson (UA) 6-3, 3-3 (DNF)
No. 3 - Lilian Asuaje (NIU) def. Amy Sherlock (UA) 6-3, 6-4
No. 4 - Megan Brooks (NIU) def. Alyssa Carlson (UA) 6-3, 6-4
No. 5 - Lindsey Berry (UA) led Nao Uememura (NIU) 6-3, 5-5 (DNF)
No. 6 - Laura Hemlepp (UA) led Chrissy Nagel (NIU) 6-1, 2-3 (DNF)