SALISBURY, Md. – The Salisbury University women's tennis team opened its 2015 season with a pair of matches against Division I opposition on Sunday in the first ever dual matches at the new SU Outdoor Tennis Courts. The Sea Gulls opened the new facility in style, defeating the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, 9-0, before falling to Towson University, 9-0.
Salisbury 9, UMES 0
It was the No. 3 doubles pair of Allison Lutz and Megan Soderlund that collected the first point in the new facility, rolling to an 8-0 win. Freshman Charlotte Walker and sophomore Claudia Lohn followed with an 8-2 win at No. 2 doubles before the No. 1 pair of junior Natalie Savage and senior Katie Youlios closed out the doubles portion with an 8-2 win.
Savage and Youlios played in a close match early, leading the UMES pair of Alese Brown and Melequa King just 3-2 through five games, but rolled for the final five games to claim the win.
Walker was able to earn the first singles point of the new outdoors court, cruising to a 6-0, 6-0 win at No. 6 singles. She was followed quickly by Lutz's win by the same score at No. 5 singles to seal up the first team victory of the season.
Savage earned a 6-0, 6-0 win at No. 1 singles, while Lohn surrendered just one game at No. 3 and Soderlund gave up just one game in each set at No. 4.
Youlios was the final match on court, at No. 2, winning 6-1, 6-2, breaking King's serve to claim the match after trailing 0-30 in the game.
Towson 9, Salisbury 0
The afternoon match, saw Towson take control early and hand the Sea Gulls their first loss of the year.
Lutz and Soderlund fell at No. 3 doubles to start the match before Walker and Lohn grabbed two games at No. 2 doubles, but dropped the match, 8-2.
The No. 1 doubles tilt was the match of the day, as the Sea Gull pair of Savage and Youlios found themselves down 6-1 before storming all the way back. It started with a break of serve and Savage holding, to get it to 6-3. Another break and Youlios holding brought the Gulls within one before another break, thanks to a stifling return of serve on the first point by Youlios and two great shots at the net by the senior, squared the match at 6-6.
Salisbury would take an 8-7 lead before the Tigers would hold serve and then take the tie breaker, 7-4, for the third doubles point.
Singles play saw the Tigers (2-0) continue their strong ways, earning all six points in straight sets. Lohn and Soderlund were the first to finish, with each grabbing a game, at No. 3 and 4, respectively allowing Towson to clinch the match.
Lutz earned a game in the first set and two in the second, falling at No. 5, while Walker battled in her No. 6 singles match, collecting five games, falling 6-2, 6-3. Youlios and Savage finished off the match at the top two spots. Each Sea Gull picked up three games in their contests.
The Sea Gulls will have nearly two weeks off from dual matches, hosting the non-NCAA sanctioned Sea Gull Open next weekend at the SU Indoor Tennis Center, before taking on their first Division III competition on Friday, February 20, hosting Juniata College.