Falcons Edged By Wyoming, 4-3, at MWC Championships
In a match that literally went down to the wire, the Air Force women's tennis team lost its first round match at the 2006 Mountain West Tennis Championships Wednesday afternoon, dropping a 4-3 decision to Wyoming at the Barnes Tennis Center in San Diego, Calif. With the loss, the eighth-seeded Falcons finish the 2006 season with a 9-18 record, while the ninth-seeded Cowboys advance to face top-seeded TCU in the quarterfinals.
The deciding match of the day was the best match of the day. With the team match tied a 3-all, Air Force freshman Meghan Kiser and Wyoming's Amy Senko produced an exciting finish at the No. 6 singles spot. After dropping the first set, 6-4, Kiser fought back to take the second by the same score. The final and deciding set was as close as it could get, going to a tiebreaker at 6-all. Senko prevailed by the slimmest of margins, winning the tiebreak, 7-5, and sending the Cowboys to the quarterfinals.
The Falcons jumped out to a fast start by claiming the doubles point with wins at Nos. 1 and 2. Senior Kat Bushey and freshman Christine Abayan continued their excellent play with a decisive 8-1 victory at the No. 1 spot over Karolina Rowinski and Andrea House. Bushey and Abayan finished their season with an outstanding 29-13 record, setting a new Division I school record for most doubles victories in a season.
The Falcons' No. 2 team of junior Kelly Morgan and Erika Shortridge clinched the point with an 8-5 victory over Corina Lazar and Amy Senko. Wyoming won the No. 3 match as Patricia Chien and Michelle Brown downed sophomore Lauren Wilson and freshman Meghan Kiser, 8-4.
Bushey gave Air Force a 2-0 lead with an impressive 6-0, 6-1 victory over Rowinski at the No. 1 spot. With the victory, Bushey improved to 21-19 overall and 14-12 at the No. 1 position.
Lazar gave the Cowboys their first point of the match with a 6-3, 6-1 victory over Morgan at the No. 4 spot. Jamie Nelson evened the match at 2-all by downing Erika Shortridge at the No. 5 spot, 6-2, 7-5, while Chien gave Wyoming a 3-2 lead with a 7-5, 6-4 win over Wilson at No. 2.
That left it in the hands of the two Falcon freshmen for Air Force to advance and both matches went the distance. Abayan cruised through the first set against House at the No. 2 spot, winning 6-1, but faltered in the second, losing it 6-4. Abayan battled in the third set and tied the team match at 3-all by taking the final set, 6-2. That left Kiser and Senko on the court to decide the match.
#9 Wyoming 4, #8 Air Force 3
MWC Championships -- First Round
April 26, 2006 at San Diego, CA
1. Kat Bushey (AF) def. Karolina Rowinski, 6-0, 6-1
2. Patricia Chien (WYO) def. Lauren Wilson, 7-5, 6-4
3. Christine Abayan (AF) def. Andrea House, 6-1, 4-6, 6-2
4. Corina Lazar (WYO) def. Kelly Morgan, 6-3, 6-1
5. Jamie Nelson (WYO) def. Erika Shortridge, 6-2, 7-5
6. Amy Senko (WYO) def. Meghan Kiser, 6-4, 4-6, 7-6(5)
1. Bushey/Abayan (AF) def. Rowinski/House, 8-1
2. Morgan/Shortridge (AF) def. Lazar/Senko, 8-5
3. Chien/Michelle Brown (WYO) def. Wilson/Kiser, 8-4