Blue Raiders open season with victory

MT is 1-0 for third-straight year

January 29, 2011 · Athletic Communications

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. - The Middle Tennessee women's tennis team began the 2011 campaign with a 5-2 victory over Belmont Friday evening at the Wildwood Tennis Club in Brentwood, Tenn. It marks the third consecutive season in which the Blue Raiders have opened with a win, while head coach Melissa Schaub starts her coaching career with a positive result.

"It was a great, all-around, team win," Schaub said. "What we have been emphasizing on the practice courts was carried over into the match and it was reflected with a solid result. We still have a long way to go, but this was a good start."

Middle Tennessee (1-0) garnered the match's first point after claiming triumphs in two of the three doubles matches. The Blue Raiders' No. 1 doubles tandem of Carla Nava and Yuiri Nomoto handed the Bruins' Abby Leatherwood and Fabiana Mersan an 8-1 setback.

The doubles point then fell to MT when Marietta Bigus and newcomer Lexi Brand held on for a 9-7 decision against Lindsay Bennett and Laura Stack at the No. 2 slot.

Momentum continued to lean towards the Blue Raiders, as they earned four singles triumphs, all in straight sets against Belmont (0-1).

Nomoto knocked off Mersan at the No. 1 position 6-1, 6-0, while Bigus defeated Leatherwood 6-3, 6-3 at the No. 2 spot.

The No. 3 contest also was won by Middle Tennessee, as Bigus handed Bennett a 6-1, 6-3 loss. Alex Dachos completed the Blue Raider singles victories with a 6-4, 6-2 decision against Stack in No. 5 action.

Brand and Lisa Maas made their Middle Tennessee debuts during the contest.

The Blue Raiders will return to action at 4 p.m. Friday when they travel to Chattanooga, Tenn., to face the Chattanooga Lady Mocs.

Middle Tennessee 5, Belmont 2

No. 1 Yuiri Nomoto (MT) def. Fabiana Mersan (BEL) 6-1, 6-0
No. 2 Marietta Bigus (MT) def. Abby Leatherwood (BEL) 6-3, 6-3
No. 3 Carla Nava (MT) def. Lindsay Bennett (BEL) 6-1, 6-3
No. 4 Catherine Holliday (BEL) def. Lexi Brand (MT) 6-3, 5-2 ret.
No. 5 Alex Dachos (MT) def. Laura Stack (BEL) 6-4, 6-2
No. 6 Natalia Nunes (BEL) def. Lisa Maas (MT) 6-2, 6-2

No. 1 Nava/Nomoto (MT) def. Leatherwood/Mersan (BEL) 8-1
No. 2 Bigus/Brand (MT) def. Bennett/Stack (BEL) 9-7
No. 3 Holliday/Nunes (BEL) def. Dachos/Maas (MT) 8-3

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