GORHAM, Maine - The University of Southern Maine Huskies women's tennis team started its first match of the season gutting out three doubles points and worked its way to a 6-3 win over the Plymouth State University Panthers Saturday afternoon at the Gorham High School Tennis Courts, giving first-year USM head coach Ron Chicoine his first collegiate win.
The win is the first for USM since a 7-0 victory over Pine Manor College last September and the first conference victory for the Huskies since the 2005 season when they narrowly defeated UMass Dartmouth on Oct. 10. It is the first time that the Huskies have defeated the Panthers since 2003, when they won by an identical score of 6-3.
Southern Maine begins its season with a 1-0 record in the Little East for the first time since 2000 when it defeated Rhode Island College 6-3. The loss is the second straight for the Panthers who dip to 0-2 and 0-1 in the LEC.
With a pair of 8-6 wins at second and third doubles, USM freshman Tegan Talbot (Topsham, Maine/Mt. Ararat) and sophomore Katelyn Ouellette (Lewiston, Maine) took a hard-won 9-8 (8-6) win at first doubles, defeating the PSU's first doubles tandem of freshman Sara Burke (Barrington, R.I.) and sophomore Laura Donovan (Acton, Mass./Acton-Boxborough).
The Huskies, needing only to win two singles points for the victory, earned three points in singles action at third, fourth and fifth singles. Freshman Samantha Tardif (Biddeford, Maine) battled her way to a 6-3, 6-7 (2), 6-4 win at fourth singles, downing PSU freshman Rachel Figura (Cheshire, Conn.).
PSU picked up singles wins from Burke at No. 1, Donovan at No. 2, and junior Megan Cooper (Camarillo, Calif./Rio Mesa) at No. 6.
Southern Maine returns to action on Wednesday (4:00 p.m.) against non-conference opponent Gordon College. Plymouth State is at Worcester State on Tuesday (3:30 p.m.).
Southern Maine 6, Plymouth State 3
1. Sara Burke (PSU) def. Kristine Brammer (SM), 6-2, 6-2
2. Laura Donovan (PSU) def. Katelyn Ouellette (SM), 6-3, 6-2
3. Tegan Talbot (SM) def. Lydia Smith (PSU), 6-1, 7-6 (7-3)
4. Sam Tardif (SM) def. Rachel Figura (PSU), 6-3, 6-7 (2-7), 6-4
5. Erica Robertson (SM) def. Lacey Mailman (PSU), 6-1, 6-2
6. Megan Cooper (PSU) def. Lori Anne Esmiller (SM), 6-1, 6-2
1. Tegan Talbot/Katelyn Ouellette (SM) def. Sara Burke/Laura Donovan (PSU) 9-8 (8-6)
2. Kristine Brammer/Sam Tardif (SM) def. Lydia Smith/Rachel Figura (PSU) 8-6
3. Erica Robertson/Laura Bell (SM) def. Dana Holdredge/Buffy Garland (PSU) 8-6
(Courtesy of Southern Maine Sports Information)
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