AZUSA, Calif.-- The No. 16 ranked (NCAA Division II) Azusa Pacific women’s tennis team found itself in an early hole that it couldn’t dig out of, falling 5-4 to No. 2 ranked Williams (Mass.; NCAA Division III) on Monday afternoon. The Cougars dropped a pair of doubles matches to open the day, before the Ephs grabbed three of the first four singles matches to clinch the victory.
Azusa Pacific (11-5) closed the day with two wins to narrow the deficit from 5-2 to 5-4, but Kara Shoemaker’s 7-5, 6-3 victory against No. 25 Emily Harris kept Williams’ perfect season intact (6-0).
Natalie Johnson recorded a 6-1, 6-3 defeat of Kathleen Elkins at No. 2 before Kim Koetterheinrich and Stephanie Quan finished the day with back-to-back wins. Koetterheinrich beat Hannah Atkinson 2-6, 6-4, 6-1 at No. 3, while Quan posted a 7-5, 2-6, 11-9 win over Rebecca Curran at No. 5. Danae Ingwaldson suffered a 6-1, 7-5 loss to Linda Shin at No. 3, and Maria Pylypiv defeated Lindsey Yeom 6-0, 6-1 at No. 4.
In doubles the Cougars’ duo of Koetterheinrich and Yeom posted an 8-5 win against Atkinson and Pastor at No. 3, but Elkins and Pylypiv registered an 8-0 defeat of Harris and Quan at No. 2. The newly arranged doubles team of Ingwaldson and Johnson battled back from a 5-1 hole, but fell to Shoemaker and Curran 8-5 at No. 1.
Azusa Pacific will return to action on Friday, looking to avenge a 5-4 loss on Feb. 17th against Fresno Pacific when it hosts the Sunbirds at 1:30 at the Munson & Bavougian Tennis Complex.