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Liberty Downs Morgan State, 6-1, in Home Opener

February 21, 2014  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Annisha Domenech (pictured) teamed with fellow senior Cameron Richard to capture a doubles win on Friday against Morgan State.

Annisha Domenech (pictured) teamed with fellow senior Cameron Richard to capture a doubles win on Friday against Morgan State.

The Liberty women's tennis team captured its second win in a row on Friday, knocking off Morgan State, 6-1, in the Lady Flames 2014 home opener at the Sports Racket.

Liberty improves to 5-2 on the season, its best start since the 2004 campaign. The Lady Flames also remain unbeaten all-time against Morgan State, leading the series, 4-0. The Bears fall to 0-3 on the year.

With Morgan State competing with only five players, Liberty received a victory by default in the No. 6 singles position and a 1-0 lead before the match started.

Liberty was afforded a one match advantage in doubles play, when Mariely Hassey and Valerie Thong won by default in the No. 3 position.

The Lady Flames notched victories in the remaining two doubles tilts. In their first match of the season as a doubles pair, Belen Rivera and Brittany Yang downed Marqarita Belyakova and Arina Aliueva, 8-2, in the No. 1 spot. Also competing as a duo for the first time this year, Liberty's senior combination of Cameron Richard an Annisha Domenech ousted Chelsi Russell and Jasmine Edwards, 8-3, at No. 2.

Liberty quickly clinched the match with a trio of straight-set wins to begin singles play. Richard got the ball rolling at the No. 5 position with her second victory of the year, 6-0, 6-1, against Tiffany Hughes. Maria Khval followed with her team leading sixth singles victory, knocking off Belyakova, 6-0, 6-1, in the top spot. Khval's win sealed the contest for the Lady Flames. No. 5 player Nicola Wellman rolled past Edwards, 6-1, 6-0, putting the Lady Flames ahead 5-0.

In the No. 3 position, Hassey was dealt her first loss of the season by Aliueva, 0-6, 6-4, 10-8.

Rebekah Jenkins closed the match with a 6-4, 6-4 straight-set ousting of Russell. Jenkins second win in a row made the final score 6-1 in favor of Liberty.

The Lady Flames return to the court tomorrow for their Big South opener against Campbell. The match is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. at the Hershey-Esbenshade Tennis Courts.

Liberty 6, Morgan State 1
1. Belen Rivera/Brittany Yang (LU) def. Marqarita Belyakova/Arina Aliueva (MSU), 8-2
2. Cameron Richard/Annisha Domenech (LU) def. Chelsi Russell/Jasmine Edwards (MSU), 8-3
3. Mariely Hassey/Valerie Thong (LU) won by default

1. Maria Khval (LU) def. Marqarita Belyakova (MSU), 6-0, 6-1
2. Rebekah Jenkins (LU) def. Chelsi Russell (MSU), 6-4, 6-4
3. Arina Aliueva (MSU) def. Mariely Hassey (LU), 0-6, 6-4, 10-8
4. Nicola Wellman (LU) def. Jasmine Edwards (MSU), 6-1, 6-0
5. Cameron Richard (LU) def. Tiffany Hughes (MSU), 6-0, 6-1
6. Brittany Yang (LU) won by default