Zhang and Wen lead Seasiders to victory

Zhang and Wen lead Seasiders to victory

COLUMBUS, Ga. – No. 1 BYU-Hawaii women's tennis team took the 8-1 victory behind the strong play of Nannan (Dallas) Zhang and Xin (Summer) Wen's against No. 8 Columbus State University on Tuesday at Mary V. Blackmon Tennis Center.

"Columbus State was a great team," BYU-Hawaii head coach Dave Porter said. "We came out focused early in doubles knowing we were facing a top-10 team and I was impressed with how we played. There were a few things I would like to see us improve on in singles, but overall I was please with our play."

Facing their first ranked doubles team this season, No. 2 Nannan (Dallas) Zhang and Xin (Summer) Wen defeated No. 10 Camila Tobar and Kirsa Utech 8-3 to give the Seasiders (14-0) the early lead. The No. 16 ranked pairing of Min (Karen) Liu and Shu-Ying (Suzie) Hsieh overtook their Columbus State (12-4) opponents Beatriz Leon and Giorgia Vitale 8-2.

Jade Griffin and Kanela Adamson looked to round out a sweep in doubles facing Saravinder Pannu and Rachael Williams in a close match in No. 3 doubles.  The Seasiders took an early lead, but the Cougar duo won back-to-back games to close it to 7-5 late. Griffin and Adamson stood strong to take the next game and win the match 8-5 to give BYU-Hawaii the 3-0 lead heading to singles.

No. 1 Zhang faced her first ranked opponent in singles this year in No. 14 Leon and came out with a 6-1, 6-2 win. No. 47 Wen was impressive in a top-50 ranked showdon in No. 2 sinlges with No. 36 Camila Tobar with a 6-1 ,6-2 win. No. 7 Liu overpowered Olivera Tadjin with double-bagels in No. 3 singles to make it 6-0 lead in favor of the Seasiders.

Games were tight on the final three singles courts between Columbus State and BYU-Hawaii. The Seasiders' Hsieh and the Cougars' Utech traded games early in the first set with Hsieh coming out on top 6-4. Hsieh used the momentum from the first set to take the second 6-2 and win the match.  Jeong-Min Jeon was involved in a similar battle in No. 6 singles with Panuu taking a 6-4, 6-1 victory to make it 8-0 in favor of BYU-Hawaii.

In the final match of the day, Griffin and Vitale battled to a stalemate in the first set and Griffin took the tiebreaker for the 7-6 win. Vitale responded with a strong 6-2 win in the second set to set up the super tiebreaker. The players continued to trade points, but Vitale got the edge late for the 10-8 win and the lone Cougar victory of the match.

The Seasiders return to action tomorrow against Tuskegee at 10 a.m. EDT. 

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