After first win, Cyclones hungry for more

Michael Schmitt

After almost a month of close losses and mounting pressure, hard work and dedication finally has paid off.

The ISU tennis team won its first meet of the season on Sunday against Northern Iowa 7-0 in Waterloo, Iowa.

“We were just waiting for this win, we’ve been really close in all our matches and they kind of just went the other way, and I think from now on, once we have the win we’ll keep it,” said senior Maria Macedo. “It takes the pressure off a little bit, and we can start playing more confidently.”

Macedo tallied her first singles win of the season against Northern Iowa’s Nina Pfahler 6-2, 6-4.

“It feels great, I haven’t been playing the best so far so I just need to start getting a little more confident in my game and this match helped that,” Macedo said. “I feel better, and it will help for the rest of the season.”

Freshman Ksenia Pronina and sophomore Simona Cacciuttolo kept their winning streaks alive, extending them both to three. The pair also has won two doubles matches in the last three meets.

Coach Armando Espinosa has been emphasizing consistent play in practice and the team responded with the victory.

The Cyclones (1-7) have won the doubles point in two straight meets while junior Tessa Lang and senior Marie-Christine Chartier have led the team with a 4-3 doubles record this season.

Espinosa said the team has had the right combinations in doubles but haven’t gotten the same result from each pair.

“At the beginning we didn’t have concrete doubles partners, but we’ve been playing with the same partners lately and that helps, we play more as a couple and that definitely helps come match time,” Macedo said.

Before the meet, Chartier emphasized the need for the team to be more consistent and not have so many ups and downs. Iowa State did not have many ups and downs this weekend, dominating Northern Iowa (6-4) and winning eight of the nine matches played.

The Cyclones only lost one match, an 8-4 doubles loss by the team of Macedo and junior Jenna Langhorst.

The team will hope to keep up its recent success when it travels to Hawaii on Tuesday. It will have a few days to get used to the four-hour time difference and the hot temperatures before taking on Eastern Michigan on Thursday at 8 p.m.

The Cyclones will then take on No. 74 Hawaii on Saturday at 4 p.m. It will be Iowa State’s second meet against a ranked team this season; its first resulted in a 4-3 loss to College of Charleston.