No. 7 Wildcats sweep singles matches (Women’s Tennis)

Cleyana Mayweather

Northwestern finished the preseason tournament circuit in dominating fashion at the Wildcat Invitational last weekend at the Combe Tennis Center. The Wildcats blew past the competition of DePaul, Western Michigan, and Utah, going undefeated in their single matches at the invitational.

Freshman Maria Mosolova, ranked second in the country, won Flight A with nine points, leading the way for the Cats.

NU was victorious in four other flights as well. Sophomore Samantha Murray won Flight B with nine points, junior Nazlie Ghazal proved to be the best in both Flight C and D, and sophomore Suzie Matzenauer took the victory in Flight E.

The only thing that the No. 7 Cats weren’t perfect in at the invitational was doubles matches, where they posted an 18-2 record.

Coach Claire Pollard was impressed with her team’s performance in the invitational.

“We’re just good. We have a really deep team. They work hard, they prepare well and I just feel good about the team that we are able to put out there right now,” Pollard said.

In the first day of play on Friday, the Cats went undefeated in matches against DePaul and Western Michigan. In Flight A, Mosolova easily defeatef DePaul’s Dunja Autunovic 6-3, 6-2.

Mosolova’s teammates were just as impressive as she was. No. 20 Murray defeated DePaul’s Gergana Ganeva 6-1, 6-0 in Flight B, and Lauren Lui defeated DePaul’s Selma Salkovic 6-7, 6-1, 6-2 in Flight C.

Ghazal and Matzenauer finished the singles domination, defeating opponents from DePaul with scores of 6-1, 6-0 and 6-0, 6-0 respectively.

In doubles play, NU won all eight of its matches. In Flight A, Mosolova and Keri Robison defeated Pahl/Saruta (WMU), 8-4 and Murray and Lui defeated Ganeva/Autunovic (DePaul), 8-4. The Cats were victorious in Flights B, C and D as well.

“It was a good start,” said Pollard of NU’s sizzling opening day. “I think we were able to get a lot of things done.

“We were a little better than the other teams, so our goal was to try to maintain our level.”

In the second day of competition, the Cats were just as dominant, once again going undefeated in singles competition. This time the victim was the Western Michigan Broncos, and the Cats did not surrender a single set.

In Flight A, Mosolova defeated WMU’s Kerstin Pahl 6-3, 6-1. Murray dominated WMU’s Priyanka Parekh 6-1, 6-3 in Flight B and Ghazal won her match with WMU’s Noriko Saruto 6-3, 6-2 in Flight C.

NU dropped two doubles matches on Saturday, but that was its only mistake. The Cats were able to earn two victories in Flight A, as the pair of Lui and Georgia Rose defeated a team from DePaul 8-1 while Mosolova and Murray defeated a pair from Utah 8-1.

Pollard attributed the losses in doubles play to her constant juggling of the pairings.

“I need to solidify the doubles lineups,” she said.

The last day of the tournament was just as impressive as the start for NU. Matched up against Utah in singles and Western Michigan in doubles, the Cats won every set they played.

Overall, the invitational was a success for the Cats, and they will hope to keep the momentum going as they prepare to take on William & Mary on Jan. 20 in their first dual match of the season.

Reach Cleyana Mayweather at

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