Women’s tennis 112-match winning streak against the Big Sky comes to an end

State Hornet Staff

The Hornets this season have cruised by Big Sky Conference opponents, but Friday in Missoula, Mont. against the University of Montana, the women’s streak of 112 consecutive wins against conference foes was snapped./

This is the first conference loss for Sacramento State women’s tennis since 2001, where the program has remained undefeated for almost 13 years.

Sac State went on the road to face Big Sky foes Montana and Montana State and lost to both teams at 3-4. This setback moved the team into second place behind Montana.

The Hornets started out in Missoula, Mont., sweeping Montana in doubles to earn the first point of the match.

In singles No. 1 Alina Soltanici had to retire against Haley Driver in the second set due to an ankle injury. The freshman lost the first set 0-6 and was down in the second set at 1-3.

Senior captain Sophie Lohscheidt picked up the first singles victory in position No. 3 against Montana’s Sasha Carter at 6-2, 6-4. Sophomore Daria Savchenko returned to the lineup and overpowered the Grizzlies Precious Gbadamosi at 7-6 (5), 6-2 at No. 2.

The Hornets were up 3-1 until sophomore Olivia Boija went to three sets against Laurence Pelchat and lost 4-6, 6-1, 7-5. The victory would have put away Montana, but the women fell in positions No. 4-6.

The deciding point came in singles No. 5, where freshman Deimante Bulatovaite lost the first set, but came back in the second, forcing a tiebreaker. Bulatovaite was up in the third set until Ashley Mackey rallied to clinch the win over Sac State at 3-6, 7-5, 6-7 (6-8).

After a match that lasted for six hours, the women had to move forward and travel three hours to face Montana State in Bozeman, Mont.

The women had to forfeit doubles match No. 3 due to the injury of Soltanici. At position No. 1, Lohscheidt and Boija beat out Montana State 8-5, but Sac State fell in position No. 2 (2-8).

With the team unable to produce six healthy players, the Hornets had to forfeit singles match No. 6. The women were able to take singles No. 1-3 going up 3-2, but freshman Emily McColl lost the deciding match at No. 5 (6-4, 5-7, 6-4).

After yet another long match, the Bobcats were able to clinch the victory with McColl’s loss and the forfeit at No. 6.

Sac State (9-14, 7-2) is scheduled to continue on the road against Northern Arizona in its final conference match of the season on Sunday.