NORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. - Plymouth State University is in second place behind defending champion Rhode Island College after the first day of the Little East Conference Women's Tennis Championships, hosted by UMass Dartmouth.
The Anchorwomen lead the eight-team field with 13 points, while PSU is second with 10. Salem State (9.5) is third, followed by Bridgewater State (8.5), UMass Dartmouth (3), Western Connecticut (1), UMass Boston (0.5) and Southern Maine (0).
The three doubles championships were determined on Saturday, with RIC winning two and PSU taking the other. The Anchorwomen captured the titles in the first and third flights, while the PSU tandem of sophomore Meghan Rodier (Francestown, N.H./ConVal) and junior Joan Kietzman (Plymouth, N.H.) pulled out the championship for the Panthers in the second flight.
PSU has four of its six singles entries still alive heading into Sunday's semifinals. The Panthers will have their work cut out for them if they want to reclaim the team title they won in 2004, as RIC has all six of its singles players still alive in the tournament.
Plymouth State players still competing for a singles title on Sunday include senior Erica Huckins (Holderness, N.H.), the top seed at No. 3; senior Kiley Boyd (Brattleboro, Vt.), the top seed at No. 4; Kietzman, the second seed at No. 5, and junior Briley Boisvert (Goffstown, N.H.), the third seed at No. 6. Junior Jill Deyermond (Atkinson, N.H.), the fifth seed at No. 1 singles, and Rodier, the fifth seed at No. 2, were first-round casualties.
Rodier (far left) and Kietzman (left) easily won their first match at No. 2 doubles, then cruised to the championship with straight-set victories over opponents from RIC and Salem State. The Panther duo finishes the season with a team-best 11-3 record in doubles.
Deyermond and Huckins were seeded fourth at No. 1 doubles and won their first match before being knocked out in the semifinals by the eventual champions from RIC, while Boyd and Boisvert, the third seed at No. 3 doubles, won two matches before losing to their RIC opponents in the final.
RIC is seeking its fifth LEC title in the last eight years, having won in the odd years (1999, 2001, 2003, and 2005). PSU won its first and only conference championship in 2004.
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