ANDERSON, S.C. – After dropping its first two matches of the season, Anderson University women’s tennis looks to get into the win column on Wednesday when it hosts Peach Belt Conference opponent USC Aiken at the Max Grubbs Memorial Courts. First serve is slated for 2 p.m.
Suffering a 7-2 loss in its home opener against Newberry, AU dropped its second straight contest to in-state rival Lander, 5-4, on Monday. The two straight losses to begin the season is the worst start to a year since the 2010 campaign, Anderson’s final season in Conference Carolinas. That year, the Trojans began their slate with back-to-back setbacks to archrival Erskine and Queens, but eventually closed the year with a 12-8 record.
Entering Wednesday’s match with AU’s only 2-0 singles record is freshman Rebecca Bruning who has two straight set wins at the No. 3 position. On Monday, Bruning knocked off Lander’s Renata Mello 6-0, 6-2 as the Trojans nabbed three singles wins for the match. Holding 1-1 singles marks are junior Karen Ching and sophomore Alexandra Ebner who joined Bruning in the win column on Monday.
In the doubles round, AU has struggled to find points as the tandem of Bruning and junior Lindsay Gregory join Ching and senior Avery Owens as the lone teams with doubles wins. Bruning and Gregory notched an 8-2 win over Lander’s Marion Courbis and Ivanka Mocic on Monday.
With a match pending on Tuesday against UNC Pembroke, USC Aiken carries a perfect 2-0 record and has yet to give up a team point, sweeping Belmont Abbey on Feb. 7 and Clark Atlanta on Feb. 9, 9-0. Two matches that were scheduled prior to Wednesday’s matchup were not played due to inclement weather, as the Feb. 11 match with Newberry was cancelled and the Feb. 15 meeting with Coker was postponed to March 2.
Playing No. 1 singles for USCA is senior Margot Simon who has yet to drop a game, winning in straight sets 6-0, 6-0 in both of her matches. While teaming up with sophomore Julia Arruda and senior Franziska Regel in doubles play, Simon and her partner have given up just two games this year.
Last season, the Pacers closed the year with a 10-12 record and a 5-8 mark in the PBC. With a strong enough record to advance to the PBC Tournament, USC Aiken was eliminated by Augusta State 5-4 in the elimination round.
Anderson and USC Aiken have not met since the 2011 season when AU captured a 5-1 win over the Pacers in Aiken on Feb. 18, 2011.