Vikings Host Valparaiso and UIC to Continue League Slate

Vikings Host Valparaiso and UIC to Continue League Slate

April 1, 2011

Contact: Greg Murphy

CLEVELAND, Ohio - The Cleveland State women's tennis team is back home for the first time in just under a month when the Vikings host two Horizon League contests this weekend. CSU will welcome Valparaiso on Saturday (April 2) for a 6:00 p.m. match before taking on UIC on Sunday (April 3) at 11:00 a.m.

Both matches will be played at the Paramount Tennis Club in Westlake.

"This is a huge weekend for us as a team," head coach Brian Etzkin said. "I feel that we are coming into our own as a team and we got off to a great start in league play with two wins on the road last week. We have to continue to play with a high level of energy and confidence if we want to keep us the success.

"The match against Valpo will be tough because we know we will get their best shot on every court so we have to come ready to play. And UIC is the program that every team in the league strives to be. It will be a challenge for us and will really let us see how far we have come as a team this year."

UIC has won 125 straight matches against league foes and has captured the last 14 Horizon League titles.

The Vikings enter the weekend with a 7-10 overall mark, but are tied with UIC for first place in the league at 7-0 after winning at Green Bay and Milwaukee by identical 7-0 scores last weekend.

"We played well up in Wisconsin last weekend," Etzkin said. "That is never an easy trip because of the long travel and fear of not having your legs under you, but I thought the girls came out strong in both matches and played well."

Junior Catrine Bjerrehus won both of her matches at No. 1 singles in straight sets, winning three of her four sets, 6-1. She also teamed with sophomore Maria Lazaris for a pair of wins at No. 2 singles as Bjerrehus earned her second Horizon League Player of the Week award of the spring.

"It was great to see Cat get two wins last weekend the way she did," Etzkin said. "She was dominant in both matches and I thought her win against Milwaukee was one of the best wins she has had all season."

Freshman Alex Bush also won both of her singles matches at the No. 2 position, improving her team win total to 18. She also teamed with classmate Alex Bush to win two matches at the top spot in the doubles lineup as the duo improved to 9-4 this season.

After the two matches this weekend, the Vikings are back on the road for two contests next week, playing a 2:00 p.m. match at Wright State on Saturday (April 9) and a 2:00 p.m. contest at Butler on Sunday (April 10).