Tennis revs up

Matt Hawkins and Matt Hawkins

After back-to-back weekends of intense tournament play, The BG women’s tennis team hosts its first dual-match of the season against Wayne State on Thursday.

Falcons head coach Penny Dean said the competition from Wayne State will not be a rough as what they’ve faced so far, but it is just as important.

“It’ll be the start of our record as a team for the season and it’s important for the freshman to get a feel for the dual-match,” Dean said.

Those Falcon freshmen include Jenna Nussbaum and Andrea Volle. Both advanced to the back-draw finals of the Wolverine Invitational last weekend but each lost in their respective finals in three sets.

Sophomore Ashley Jakupcin has also dominated her competition in the first two tournaments. Jakupcin defeated Xavier’s Stephanie Bauer in the number two singles final of the BGSU Invitational, and scorched Western Michigan’s Carrie Jeanmaire in the back-draw final of her flight during the Wolverine Invitational.

Jakupcin also became the first falcon ever to defeat Bauer in her four years of playing in the BGSU Invitational and her victory against Jeanmaire was her first in three tries. Dean said Jakupcin has already made a significant impact in such a short time.

“She beat darn good players,” Dean said. “She’s really improved her game up a level.”

Along with Jakupcin, Dean said every other player has moved their game up a notch as well.

“It’s not just maybe four are playing well and five are struggling; everybody’s had a taste of the level they can play,” Dean said.

Junior Heidi Romer said this is the best this team has played in the three years she’s been here and she is confident that the team will play well on Thursday.

“We are all ready to kick butt,” Romer said. “I think we could sweep (Wayne State) 7-0.”

Dean said she hopes everyone will carry the momentum built from these first two tournaments into their first dual-match.

“I feel like we have good confidence now,” Dean said. “Hopefully we can build on that and it will carry over for the rest of the season.”

The Falcons host Wayne State on Thursday at 3:00 p.m. at Keefe Courts.