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McAfee, van Ooststroom and Sheehan win their last match

McAfee, van Ooststroom and Sheehan win their last matchTennis

By Monica Espitia, Podcast Ediotr 

The UNCP tennis team played its last match before the discontinuation of the program against Lander on April 21.

Before action started, seniors Shelby Bickel, Leigh-Anne McAfee and Monica Espitia were recognized for the work they have done on the team for their four years at UNCP.

With this 6-3 loss against the Lady Bearcats, the Lady Braves officially closed the season with an overall 6-15 record and 1-12 record in Peach Belt action.

Lander dominated over the three courts in doubles.                

Senior Marion Courbis and junior Renata Mello won the tight 8-6 confrontation against McAfee and Bickel.

On court two, junior Elise Sancelme and sophomore Alyssa Savill won their match against sophomore Gabriela van Ooststroom and freshman Kelsey Vanquaethem 8-3.

Espitia and sophomore Morgan Sheehan, playing on court three, put on a battle against junior Maggie Elliott and sophomore Ivanka Mocic, but ended up losing 8-6.

In singles action, McAfee captured the first win for the Lady Braves after defeating Courbis 7-6 (7-3), 6-3.

No.2 Vanquaethem competed against Sancelme, but lost 6-4, 6-2.

Bickel, playing on court three, also put on a battle against freshman Anni Poikola. The Finland native from Lander captured the 7-5, 6-3 victory.

On court four, van Ooststroom dropped her first set against Mocic 6-1.

At the beginning of the second set, when the score was a tight 2-2, the sophomore from Lander was forced to retire due to sickness.

Savill overpowered Espitia on the fifth court with a solid 6-0, 6-1 score. Giving the Bearcats its sixth point of the day.

Last one on the court, Sheehan battled throughout a three-set match to earn the third point for the Lady Braves. Sheehan captured the first set 6-1, but dropped the second with equal score.                                        

In the deciding third-set   tiebreaker the Swansboro-native beat senior Lori Flick 10-8.

UNCP’s head coach Robin Langley was awarded the PBC coach of the year award.

“I am very humbled and honored receiving this award the last year of my coaching career at UNCP. It was a very thoughtful tribute given to me by my coaching colleagues in the Peach Belt Conference. I truly believe that good players make good coaches. I have been blessed with good players who have made it easy to go to work each day over the years. I also have had tremendous assistant coaches throughout my tenure. I especially want to thank Jenna McGary for all she has given to the program the last four years.” Langley said.

Photo by Stefanie Smith. Morgan Sheehan and Monica Espitia high-five in a match earlier this season.