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    Liberty Sweeps Bellarmine 7-0 to Remain in First in ASUN

    Apr 8, 2022 | Lynchburg Va | Women's Tennis

    Liberty maintained its hold of first place in the ASUN Conference with a 7-0 sweep at Bellarmine, Friday at the Eddie Weber Tennis Complex.

    The Lady Flames bolster their overall record to 17-5 and 6-1 in the ASUN. Bellarmine falls to 1-20 and 0-7 in the ASUN. Liberty remains a half game ahead of Stetson (5-1) and North Florida (5-1) and a game ahead of FGCU (4-1, will play Lipscomb later on Friday) in the ASUN standings.

    Liberty’s 7-0 sweep is its third of the year and first since Feb. 12 at home versus Longwood. The Lady Flames are 4-0 all-time against the Knights and have swept Bellarmine 7-0 on two occasions.

    The Lady Flames made program history on Friday, as freshman standout Maria Juliana Parra Romero won her 25th singles match of the season. Parra Romero (25-4, 14-2 spring) and teammate Esther Lovato (25-4, 16-2 spring) are the first duo in school history to win 25 or more matches each in a season.

    Liberty 7, Bellarmine 0 

    Singles Competition

    1. M. Juliana P. Romero (LIBERTYW) def. Ekaterina Tikhonko (BELL) 7-5, 6-3
    2. Kalani Soli (LIBERTYW) def. Madison Devillez (BELL) 6-3, 6-3
    3. Eloise Saraty (LIBERTYW) def. Ashley Jonathan (BELL) 6-7 (6-8), 7-6 (7-5), 1-0 (10-4)
    4. Alexandra Almborg (LIBERTYW) def. Maja Kozerski (BELL) 6-0, 6-1
    5. Micaela Ode Mitre (LIBERTYW) def. Channing Varnum (BELL) 6-1, 6-0
    6. Willa Rogers (LIBERTYW) def. Laurie Hargis (BELL) 6-0, 6-1

    Doubles Competition

    1. M. Juliana P. Romero/Kalani Soli (LIBERTYW) vs. Madison Devillez/Ashley Jonathan (BELL) 4-5, unfinished
    2. Tiffany Nguyen/Micaela Ode Mitre (LIBERTYW) def. Ekaterina Tikhonko/Channing Varnum (BELL) 6-3
    3. Elsa Kirch/Bruna Sampaio (LIBERTYW) def. Maja Kozerski/Rose Pastoret (BELL) 6-3

    Liberty 17-5, 6-1 ASUN
    Bellarmine 1-20, 0-7 ASUN
    Order of finish: Doubles (2,3); Singles (2,1,4,3,5,6)

    How It Happened
    • The Lady Flames won the doubles point for a ninth straight match for a 1-0 lead over the Knights. Liberty won all six singles session matches, five in straight sets. The No. 1-3 singles matches started first, as the match was played indoors at the SuRF Center (three courts).
    • Liberty’s No. 2 doubles team, Tiffany Nguyen and Micaela Ode Mitre, downed Ekaterina Tikhonko and Channing Varnum 6-3 for their eighth straight doubles victory.
    • The Lady Flames’ Elsa Kirch and Bruna Sampaio earned their first win as a pairing at No. 3 doubles. Kirch and Sampaio led Maja Kozerski and Rose Pastoret of the Knights 5-0 before the Bellarmine duo won three straight games to close the gap. The Liberty team took the next game to win the match 6-3 and make it a 1-0 lead for the guests.
    • Lady Flames No. 2 singles player Kalani Soli added to the lead with a 6-3, 6-3 triumph against Madison Devillez. Soli hit 17 winners in the match, compared to only six for Devillez.
    • One court over (No. 1 singles), Soli’s doubles partner Parra Romero knocked off Bellarmine’s top singles player Tikhonko (10-6 record entering today) in two sets, 7-5, 6-3. Parra Romero’s victory, her seventh straight, pushed the Liberty lead to 3-0. The freshman is 10-1 in the No. 1 singles slot this season.
    • No. 4 singles player Alexandra Almborg of the Lady Flames upended Kozerski 6-0, 6-1, needing only 45 minutes to claim the match. Almborg won 51-of-65 (78 percent) points in the contest, and her win clinched the match for Liberty. The Staffanstorp, Sweden native’s victory was her sixth of the spring and 10th total of the year.
    • The Lady Flames’ lead grew to 5-0 following a hard-earned three-set victory from Eloise Saraty (No. 3 singles) over Ashley Jonathan, 6-7 (6), 7-6 (5), 1-0 (10-4). Saraty was 84 percent (77-of-92) on first serves and won 56 percent (43-of-77) of first serve points as a result. Jonathan was 58-of-82 (71 percent) on first serves and won 47 percent (27-of-58) of her first serve points.
    • Ode Mitre scored Liberty’s sixth point of the day, vanquishing Varnum 6-1, 6-0. The sophomore hit 20 winners in the match and won the last 12 gmaes, while Varnum only had five winners. Ode Mitre (11-2 spring) has won seven straight singles matches.
    • After resting during the doubles session and being the last Lady Flame to start her singles match, Willa Rogers (No. 6 singles) wasted no time with a 35-minute 6-0, 6-1 win over Laurie Hargis. Rogers’ dominant effort saw her win 51 of the 59 points (86 percent) played in the match to close out the 7-0 Liberty sweep.
    • The Lady Flames improve to 3-0 in the month of April and are 8-3 in road matches, this spring.
    • Liberty is two wins away from matching the program single-season record of 19, set by the 2015 team.

    Next Up
    • Liberty will return home to face North Florida (11-8, 5-1 ASUN), next Thursday. First serve is 11 a.m. at the Liberty Tennis Complex.
    • The Lady Flames and Ospreys will be meeting for the second time ever. Liberty defeated UNF 4-3 on April 6, 2019 in what was the first-ever match between the two squads. The Lady Flames moved into first place with that win and eventually clinched a share of the ASUN regular season title and No. 1 seed for the ASUN Championship in their first year in the league.