Sea Gulls fall in CAC finale to No. 24 CNU, secure third seed for CAC tournament

Sea Gulls fall in CAC finale to No. 24 CNU, secure third seed for CAC tournament

SALISBURY, Md. – The Salisbury University women's tennis team fell in its final regular season Capital Athletic Conference match of the season on Tuesday afternoon to No. 24 Christopher Newport University at the SU Tennis Courts, 8-1.

The Captains (12-5, 6-1 CAC) swept doubles play for the first three points of the day, despite the Sea Gulls (9-6, 5-2 CAC) holding two leads midway through the top two matches and the No. 3 team of junior Sage Cole and sophomore Taylor Cooper making a late push.

The No. 3 match was the first completed, as Christopher Newport's pair of Emily Morgan and Katie Carlson opened up a 7-2 lead. Cooper and Cole rallied for three-straight games, but dropped the first point by an 8-5 score.

In the No. 1 and No. 2 doubles matches, Salisbury held 4-3 leads, but their Captain counterparts came back for the wins. After leading 4-3, at No. 2, senior Claudia Lohn and freshman Jordan Schaefer dropped the next few games to ultimately fall, 8-4.

Freshmen Julia Kwedi and Annika Kezman were close throughout with Kate Huck and Johanna Ranta-aho, but a late break from the Captains allowed the Christopher Newport pair to grab the 8-6 win.

The Captains sealed the team victory with the first two singles matches to come to completion, with Schaefer falling at No. 5 singles by a 6-0, 6-1 score just moments before sophomore Shannon Hickman's No. 6 match ended with her falling 6-1, 6-3.

The final four matches on court were close throughout, with Kwedi bouncing back from a 6-0 defeat in her first set at No. 2 singles, but falling in the second set 6-4. Cooper dropped a 6-3, 6-4 decision at No. 4 and Lohn fell at No. 3 by a 7-5, 6-3 score.

The final point of the day went in the Sea Gulls' favor, with Kezman picking up a 6-4, 7-6 (7-4) win against McKinney Harwood at No. 1. Harwood entered the day as the No. 16-ranked player in the Atlantic South Region.

With the win, the Captains claim the No. 2 seed in next week's CAC tournament. After both Salisbury and Christopher Newport get first-round byes, the Sea Gulls will travel to CNU as the third-seeded team in the field for the CAC semifinals. That match will be played on Wednesday, April 19.

Salisbury closes its regular season on Thursday, April 13 heading to Washington (Md.) College for a 3:30 p.m., showdown with the Shorewomen.

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