Women's Tennis Opens Season With Successful Day One at Maryland Invitational
Melissa Koning

Sept. 21, 2007

College Park, Md. - The Auburn women's tennis team opened the season on Friday at the Maryland Invitational in College Park, Md. Five Tigers picked up victories in singles play, while all four of the doubles pairs picked up at least one win.

In Flight A singles, third-seeded sophomore Melissa Koning defeated Miami of Ohio's Anatasia Dracheva, 6-4, 6-1, while junior Whitney Chappell earned the victory after Alexa Korotkevich of Nova Southeastern retired. No. 1-seeded sophomore Fani Chifchieva had a bye in the first round and will face Kendall Swenson of George Washington tomorrow.

Competing in her first collegiate tournament, top-seeded freshman Gaby Beelen won in straight sets, 6-1, 6-1, over Army's Niki Flach. Third-seeded sophomore Jil Hastenrath cruised past George Washington's Nadia Demidenko, 6-2, 6-1.

In Flight C singles, newcomer Mary Claire Slade walked away a winner, 6-0, 6-1, over Delaware's Ivana Petrich. Classmate Dunja Djuranovic took it to a tiebreaker with Miami of Ohio's Kelly Douple in the first six, but Douple ended up with the advantage, 7-6, and finished the match in the second set, 6-3. Sophomore Heather Bybee was defeated by Miami of Ohio's Kristen McPhillips, 6-2, 6-4.

In doubles action, top-seeded Chifchieva and Chappell took the first round victory, 9-7, over Tsippy Waterman and Edita Kulichova of Nova Southeastern, before falling to Missouri's Mallory Weber and Chrissy Svetlic, 8-5.

Third-seeded Koning and Beelen shut out Delaware's Elena Berry and Alexa Dragonette, 8-0, and went on to defeat Missouri's Sofia Ayala and Kaitlin Dunham, 8-2 in the second round.

In Flight B doubles, top-seeded Hastenrath and Slade earned a bye in the first round, before getting past Kendall Swenson and Nadia Demidenko of George Washington, 8-5. The freshman pair of Bybee and Djuranovic earned back-to-back victories, first defeating Madhuri Jha and Jennifer Hirsch of George Washington, 8-4, then Lauren Wilson and Erika Shortridge of Air Force, 8-5.



Action continues tomorrow at 9:30 a.m. ET at the Tennis Center. For complete results, please visit www.umterps.com.