The women’s tennis team travelled to the 2012 Duckworth Fall Classic, hosted by Clemson University (S.C.). The Eagles competed against NCAA Division I and II players as well as National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) programs.

“It was really fun to see how our team competed against Division I teams. We definitely held our ground, and to have four people in the finals of their flights was a great outcome for the weekend,” sophomore Allie Damico said.

Freshman Beatrice Rosen began the day by earning a 6-3, 6-4 victory. She proceeded to earn a 6-3, 6-1 win in the semifinals.

In the finals round, Rosen put up a strong fight, but fell 6-2, 6-3 to Virginia Commonwealth University’s Olga Barscheuskaya.

“Our team has started out on a good note, and we are getting better every day,” Rosen said.

Freshman Stephanie Loutsenko earned a 7-5, 1-6, 6-2 victory in her first match sets. She continued her strong performance with a 6-4, 7-5 win in the semifinals, and she finished as runner-up after a battle for the gold against the University of South Carolina – Upstate’s Julie Bell with a final three-set score of 3-6, 6-1, 6-4.

Damico had a strong tournament as well, first defeating Lipscomb University’s (Tenn.) Reagan Panovec (6-0, 6-2) and then Brenau University’s Eline Nagels (6-2, 4-6, 6-0). She fell in the finals to the University of Tennessee – Chattanooga’s Kayla Jones with an ending score of 6-1, 6-3.

“It felt good to be able to utilize what we have been working on into actual match situations, and it resulted in a majority of us coming out on top,” sophomore Danielle Truitt said.

Truitt received a first-round bye, and advanced to the finals after triumphing 6-1, 6-1 in the semifinal round, but she eventually fell to University of Tennessee – Chattanooga’s Jovana Pecovski. The score in the finals was 1-6, 6-2, 6-2.

The Eagles’ doubles team of sophomore Lauren Pinsky and freshman Marissa Levine fought hard and bounced back to win their next two matches after an initial drop.

The Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Small College Championships were also held over the weekend.

Junior Gabreille Clark and freshman Emma Taylor both won. Clark claimed the NCAA Division III singles title. Clark and Taylor teamed together earlier in the tournament to win the Division III doubles draw as well.The Duckworth Classic was the ending event of the 2012 fall season for the Eagles.

The women will be back out on the courts in the spring, on Saturday, Feb. 9, at home against Clayton State University.

By Nicola Braginsky