Belles look to extend winning streak against Aquinas
By KATIE McVOY
Associate Sports Editor
The Saint Mary's tennis team is looking to extend its winning streak to seven matches as it takes on Aquinas College and MIAA competition Adrian College on Saturday.
The Belles recently wrapped up a tough victory over Div. I Valaparaiso on Wednesday and hope that the confidence from that win will carry them through this weekend.
"We'll be very confident because Valpo was Div. I and [Aquinas and Adrian] are Div. III," team co-captain Annie Knish said. "We have beaten both teams in years before and we are expecting to do well against those teams."
The 5-0 Belles will compete in their first MIAA match of the season at 9 a.m. on Saturday against the Bulldogs of Adrian College. The 0-2 Bulldogs come into the match with less experience then the Belles, who spent a week in Arizona over Spring Break preparing for the season.
Saint Mary's has just begun outdoor practices in South Bend, due to the weather, and they are looking forward to starting conference play. Last season they finished with a conference record of 5-2.
"Right now we're undefeated, so we're feeling pretty good about the season and we're getting used to practicing outside," Knish said. "We're looking forward to playing in the conference, especially Hope, Calvin and Albion."
Saint Mary's also sports a better record than the Aquinas Saints, who will enter Saturdays match with a record of 4-2. Aquinas' two losses came at the hands of Ferris State and Embry-Riddle in late February and early March.
Saturday could provide some solid doubles play, as several of Aquinas' wins have come from wins by all three doubles teams. Head coach Dee Stevenson attributed Wednesday's win to some solid doubles play by his Belles.
"We have good doubles teams," he said. Knish will play No. 1 singles followed by Natalie Cook, Jeannie Knish, Kaitlin Cutler, Kris Spriggle and Elisa Ryan at 2,3,4,5 and 6 singles respectively.
Knish and Cook will team up for No. 1 doubles, Jeannie Knish and Cutler for No. 2 singles, and Ryan and sophomore Trisha Jones will round off the Saint Mary's roster.
Action kicks off at 9 a.m. outside of Angela Athletic Facility, weather permitting. Should rain be a factor, the match will probably be moved to indoor facilities at Notre Dame.
All Sports Stories for Friday, March 30, 2001