EASTERN WASHINGTON AND NORTHERN ARIZONA MEN ADVANCE, MONTANA AND MONTANA STATE WOMEN ADVANCE TO SEMIS
GOLD RIVER, Calif. - Northern Arizona ended Montana State’s reign at the Big Sky Conference men’s tennis championship, while Eastern Washington won a postseason match for the first time in school history in the quarterfinal round of the Big Sky Tennis Championships Friday morning at the Gold River Racquet Club.
The Lumberjacks downed Montana State, 4-2, in a first-round match, ending the Bobcats’ hopes of a fourth straight title.
Eastern Washington ousted Weber State, 4-0, in the other quarterfinal. Prior to the victory, the Eagles had been 0-40 in postseason history and 0-22 at the Big Sky Championships.
No. 4 seed Northern Arizona (8-13) will now take on top-seed and tournament host Sacramento State (18-5) in the semifinals at 10 a.m. Saturday morning. Eastern Washington, the No. 3 seed, will face No. 2 seed Montana in a Saturday semifinal at 10 a.m. Eastern Washington is now 13-11 this season, while Montana, who had a bye on Friday, is 11-8.
The Eagles earned the doubles point, and then took care of the Wildcats with three impressive victories in the singles competition. Weber State managed just five game victories in those three singles losses.
Junior Patrick Millican, of Winnipeg, Manitoba, ended the match with his victory at No. 3 singles. Millican beat Travis Covington 6-1, 6-2, after teammate No. 6 Art Karas beat Trevor Thompson 6-0, 6-1, and No. 5 Nico Riego de Dios topped Chris Williams 6-0, 6-1.
Northern Arizona earned the point at doubles, and then jumped out to a 3-0 lead with singles wins at No. 5 and No. 6. Bradley Bristow beat David Kovas 6-3, 6-1. Chris Arena beat Myles Perkins 6-2, 6-2. Montana State closed the match to 3-2 with a 6-1, 6-0 victory by Kyle McDonald at No. 2 singles, and a 6-1, 6-4 win by Anton Leonenko at No. 3 singles.
Northern Arizona’s Jeffrey Morys closed out the match with a 6-4, 6-3 win at No. 4 singles. The No. 1 singles match was stopped early in the third set.
On the women's side, No. 5 seed Montana upset No. 4 Eastern Washington, 4-3, in a close thriller and No. 3 Montana State shut down the No. 6-seed Weber State, 4-0.
Montana will now take on No. 1 seed Sacramento State (15-6) on Saturday at 2 p.m. in the semifinals while No. 2 Northern Arizona will face Montana State in the other semifinal at 2 p.m.
Montana rallied back from a 2-3 deficit, as the match came down to the No. 1 singles spot where Liz Walker beat EWU's Kasey Knox in three sets (4-6, 6-4, 7-5).
The Bobcats took an early lead by claiming the doubles point with wins at the Nos. 1 and 2 spots. Three quick singles wins helped seal the deal for Montana State. Nicole Luetolf defeated WSU's Inalise Pienaar (6-0, 7-5) at No. 2, while teammate Laura Villegas dispatched Grayce Farias (6-0, 6-2) at No. 4. Remy Clark posted a (6-2, 6-2) win over Elsje Beneke at the No. 5.
The Bobcats have appeared in the Big Sky tournament every year since 1988. Montana State has never won the tournament title but was the runner-up four times (1998, 1997, 1989, 1988).
Big Sky Conference Men’s Tennis Championship
Gold River, Calif. (Gold River Racquet Club)
Eastern Washington 4, Weber State 0
1. Fabio Mancarella, WSU, led, Pannhara Mam, 6-4, DNF
2. Mario Schabl, WSU, led Kyle Schraeder, EWU, 7-6, 1-0, DNF
3. Patrick Millican, EWU, def. Travis Covington 6-1, 6-2
4. Dave Hintze, WSU, led Keithan Gregg, EWU, 7-6, 1-1, DNF
5. Nico Riego De Dios, EWU, def. Chris Williams, 6-0, 6-1
6. Art Karas, EWU def. Trevor Thompson, WSU, 6-0, 6-1
1. Jonathan Davis/Patrick Millian, EWU, led Travis Covington/Mario Schnable, WSU, 6-5, DNF
2. Kyle Schraeder/Pannhara Mam, EWU, def. Fabio Mancarella/Dave Hintze, WSU, 8-4
3. Keithan Gregg/Kevin Erickson, EWU, def. Quinn Allred/Cole Patterson, WSU, 8-2
Northern Arizona 4, Montana State 2
1. Gareth Ducray, NAU led Jakub Dybala, MSU, 6-4, 2-6, 2-1
2. Kyle McDonald, MSU, def. Fernando Freitas, NAU, 6-0, 6-1
3. Anton Leonenko, MSU, def. Michael Platzer, NAU, 6-1, 6-4
4. Jeffrey Morys, NAU, def. Justin Hauck, MSU, 6-4, 6-3
5. Bradley Bristow, NAU, def. David, Kovas, MSU, 6-3, 6-1
6. Chris Arena, NAU, def. Myles Perkins, MSU, 6-2, 6-2
1. Kyle McDonald/Jakub Dybala, MSU, led Jeffrey Morys/Michael Platzer, NAU, 6-5, DNF
2. Chris Arena/Gareth Ducray, NAU, def. Justin Hauck/Anton Leonenko, MSU, 8-2
3. Bradley Bristow/Fernando Freitas, NAU, def. David Kovas/Myles Perkins, MSU, 8-2
Big Sky Conference Women’s Tennis Championship
Gold River, Calif. (Gold River Racquet Club)
Montana State 4, Weber State 0
1. Nuria Hernandez (MSU) led Gabriel Venditto (WSU), 7-5, 3-3 DNF
2. Nicole Luetolf (MSU) def. Inalise Pienaar (WSU), 6-0, 7-5
3. Katy Proietti (MSU) led Ashley Schapper (WSU), 6-3, 2-0 DNF
4. Laura Villegas (MSU) def. Grayce Farias (WSU), 6-0, 6-2
5. Remy Clark (MSU) def. Elsje Beneke (WSU), 6-2, 6-2
6. Keya Adamson (WSU) led McKenzie Hilmer (MSU), 6-2, 3-3 DNF
1. Fey/Proietti (MSU) def. Pienaar/Kate Ennega (WSU), 8-3
2. Hernandez/Luetolf (MSU) def. Venditto/Farias (WSU), 8-2
3. Schapper/Adamson (WSU) led Hilmer/Villegas (MSU), 7-5 DNF
Montana 4, Eastern Washington 3
1. Liz Walker (UM) def. Kasey Knox (EWU), 4-6, 6-4, 7-5
2. Mari Castello (UM) def. Iliana Petrova (EWU), 6-2, 6-2
3. Danni Paulson (UM) def. Kerstyn Dolack (EWU), 6-3, 6-0
4. Rachel Berger (EWU) def. Cheyne Ursich (UM), 6-4, 7-6 (7-4)
5. Martyna Nowak (UM) def. Amanda Mankovits (EWU), 6-7 (4-7), 6-3, 6-1
6. Marie Demerath (EWU) def. Kayla Moyse (UM) 6-2, 6-3
1. Walker/Castillo (UM) def. Knox/Petrova (EWU), 8-2
2. Demerath/Mankovits (EWU) def. Ursich/Paulson (UM), 8-4
3. Berger/Dolack (EWU) def. Nowak/Souza (UM), 8-6