Belles Fall in Heartbreaker to Scots

MISHAWAKA, Ind. - The Saint Mary's tennis team's bid at knocking off a veteran and league-leading squad from Alma came up just short on Friday evening at the South Bend Racquet Club.

The Belles claimed an 8-4 win at the third doubles flight behind the efforts of Margaret Boden and Jackie Kjolhede. The Scots, however, took the two remaining doubles flights to post a 2-1 lead.

Saint Mary's came right back to reclaim the overall lead in the match. Mary Catherine Faller took little time to post a 6-0, 6-2 victory at one singles. The Scots took the four singles flight, but Boden and Kjolhede finished within a few minutes of one another. Boden was a 6-2, 6-4 winner at six singles while Kjolhede earned a 6-3, 6-1 win at the five singles flight to put the Belles up 4-3.

Kayle Sexton and Shannon Elliott both continued to battle to push the Belles over the top for the win. After taking her opening set, Sexton continued to fight back in a second-set tiebreaker at the two singles flight. After trailing 5-3, she came back to knot the tiebreaker at 5-5. The two singles players continued to pull within a point of the win, and eventually Sexton's counterpart took the tiebreaker by an 11-9 score. The pair continued their back-and-forth match, but Alma would prevail with a 7-5 mark in the deciding third set to even the score at 4-4. Elliott was in the midst of a hard-fought match of her own while Sexton's match was being played. After also going to a decisive third set, Elliott and her Alma counterpart saw the lead trade hands a pair of times. Unfortunately for the Belles, Alma would close out the 5-4 win by taking the three singles flight within a few minutes of the completion of the two singles match.

The Belles will get a chance to regain ground in the MIAA with a quick turnaround in conference play as they travel to Trine for a league match against the Thunder beginning at 1:00 p.m. tomorrow.

Alma College 5, Saint Mary's College 4
 Singles competition
1. Mary Catherine Faller (SMC) def. Jen Meloche (ALMA) 6-0, 6-2
2. Erin Clutter (ALMA) def. Kayle Sexton (SMC) 3-6, 7-6 (11-9), 7-5
3. Amy Baranowski (ALMA) def. Shannon Elliott (SMC) 2-6, 6-4, 6-4
4. Katie Meloche (ALMA) def. Audrey Kiefer (SMC) 6-0, 6-4
5. Jackie Kjolhede (SMC) def. Maleah Benn (ALMA) 6-3, 6-1
6. Margaret Boden (SMC) def. Lauren Moreau (ALMA) 6-2, 6-4

 Doubles competition
1. Jen Meloche/Erin Clutter (ALMA) def. Mary Catherine Faller/Audrey Kiefer (SMC) 8-4
2. Amy Baranowski/Katie Meloche (ALMA) def. Kayle Sexton/Shannon Elliott (SMC) 8-6
3. Margaret Boden/Jackie Kjolhede (SMC) def. Maleah Benn/Brittany Miller (ALMA) 8-3

Match Notes:
Alma College 9-2 (3-0 MIAA)
Saint Mary's College 7-6 (1-2 MIAA)
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2,1); Singles (1,4,6,5,2,3)