KISSIMMEE, Fla. – The Ursinus College women's tennis team picked up its first win of the season in dramatic fashion Tuesday, taking four of the first five singles matches to grind out a 5-4 decision over Division II Saint Anselm.
Sophomore Summer Burkholder made her first career win count as she provided the clinching point with a victory in a third-set super tiebreaker at number six singles. Seniors Ariel Danziger and Ashley Nguyen were double winners for the Bears (1-1).
Danziger and Nguyen were all that prevented Saint Anselm (5-10) from a doubles sweep. The senior tandem came through with an 8-4 final over Meghan Holden and Maikah Bulpitt at number two, giving the Bears an opportunity to overtake the Hawks in singles play.
Nguyen bested Golden again in singles, this time by a 6-4, 6-0 count on the third court. Jess Perkins swung the pendulum back in Saint Anselm's favor with a convincing victory at number one, but senior Aileen BeVard topped Kaitlin Hughes, 6-3, 6-0, at number two and Danziger brought Ursinus to the brink of victory with a 6-3, 6-2 triumph against Bulpitt at fourth singles.
Burkholder put a bow on the Bears' first win with a gritty effort at number six, rallying for a 4-6, 6-0, 1-0 (10-7) result against Dominique Bolduc.
The Bears take on King's (Pa.) and Ave Maria in a doubleheader on Wednesday. The match with King's gets underway at 11:30 a.m.
"Today was the exact reason I love coaching college tennis here at Ursinus," remarked head coach Pete Smith. "Playing a Division II school is always a huge challenge - and this win proved what a team of girls can do when they stick together and believe in each other. They were supporting and cheering for each other all match long, and that is what makes a great team atmosphere.
"My seniors (Aileen BeVard, Ashley Nguyen, and Ariel Danziger) were outstanding today as they put forth some great performances. But I want save a special shout for sophomore Summer Burkholder, who clinched the match with a thrilling win in a third-set tiebreaker. It was the first win of her college career - and it honestly doesn't get much more dramatic than that. I'm very excited to see how the girls finish up this trip. This team grew up a lot today - it was really fun to be a part of it all."