The Western Carolina tennis squad dropped two matches in Southern Conference action last weekend on the road. Sunday the Lady Cats (4-10, 0-7) traveled to Johnson City, Tenn., where they could not keep pace with East Tennessee State University, 2-5. In their first match, the team fell to Chattanooga 0-7.
Sunday freshman Shannon Zalinski would turn the tables for the Lady Catamounts, who were topped in the top three singles contests. Playing in the number four slot, Zalinski easily won her singles match over Tatiana Arriaran in straight sets. The Greer, S.C. native won all twelve games of the contest to quickly put away Arriaran 6-0, 6-0.
In a much different fashion, junior Emmy King had to fight three sets to pick up the Lady Cats’ second point of the match in the number five singles matchup. King fell in the first set 6-2 to the Lady Bucs’ Cara Prupas.
She would battle back in the second to even the score with a 6-2 win. King closed out the match by taking the decisive third set by that same 6-2 margin.
In the doubles matchups, the number two team of King and freshman Erin Johnson found the most success. Playing neck and neck the entire way against Arriaran and Jessica Irey, they would eventually fall 9-8 after extending the match to a tie breaker finish.
Saturday Western was overwhelmed by the Lady Mocs in Chattanooga. UTC was able to capture all three doubles matches as well as the six singles matches in straight sets.
In top-seeded singles play, freshman Kristin Munn took her first set to 7-5 before falling to Daniela Greco. She was not able to fare quite as well in the second, losing 6-1.
King also battled her first set to a narrow 7-5 loss in her match against Jaclyn Wooten. However, King too could not find her shot in the second set, falling 6-0.
Today Western will face their toughest competition of the season as they take on Furman. The Lady Palladins (13-8, 6-0) arrive in Cullowhee as the Southern Conference leader and rank 16th nationally.
The Lady Cats will close out their SoCon season this Saturday at home against Wofford (2-10, 1-5). The Lady Terriers, only a game and a half above the Lady Cats in the standings, have the fewest overall wins in the conference.