Cyclone tennis earns fourth straight win

Mark Pawlak

The ISU women’s tennis team beat Drake 5-2 in action Friday, putting the Cyclones on a four-game winning streak.

To make it five in a row, the Cyclones will need to do a first in school history, defeat Oklahoma.

“It’s nice to be on a four game winning streak this time of year,” head coach Michele Conlon said.

Against Drake, Noortje Cornelissen was dominant at the No. 1 singles position, picking up the victory 6-0, 6-1.

“I thought Noortje played a phenomenal match,” Conlon said.

Sabrina Evers was victorious at the No. 3 position as were Tara Goedjen at No. 5 (6-4, 6-2) and Courtney Leese at No. 6 (6-1, 6-3).

“I started out really strong,” Leese said. “I pretty much took her out of her game.”

Doubles action saw the No. 1 team of Cornelissen and Evers, winning 8-6, and Goedjen and Kristin Gyaki, winning 8-2 at the No. 3 spot.

The No. 2 team of Edna Vazquez and Leese lost a close match, 9-8.

“It could have gone either way. We were a few points short, they’re a tough team,” Leese said. “Our other doubles teams did really well.”

The play of the Cyclones impressed their coach.

“I thought our team played absolutely outstanding,” Conlon said.

“Drake’s a good team,” she said. “I think they will be up there for the Missouri Valley Conference championship, so it’s nice to have a win over a strong caliber team.”

Now the Cyclones will be going back into conference play.

The Big 12 Conference has four teams in the top 20 in the country.

The level of competition “is a great opportunity for our student-athletes to experience,” Conlon said. “They have improved throughout the season against these types of teams.”

The Cyclones are in action Friday against Oklahoma and Saturday against ninth-ranked Texas A&M.

“The idea of winning a match against a strong institution like Oklahoma for the first time in school history should be a motivating force this week in practice,” Conlon said.