NEWARK, Del., April 14, 2013 – James Madison women’s tennis concluded the 2013 regular season with a 6-1 win defeat of conference-foe Delaware. The Dukes upped their Colonial Athletic Association record to 4-3 and their overall record to 11-6 while the Blue Hens fell to 4-2 against league opponents and 11-5 overall.
JMU won all three doubles matches to sweep the point and take a 1-0 lead into singles play. Freshman Cara Wirth (Reading, Pa./Wilson) and senior Katherine Bulling (Loveland, Ohio/Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy) improved to 12-5 this spring with an 8-1 victory over Nataliya Naumova and Christina Harrington at No. 2 doubles.
Senior Michelle Nguyen (Springfield, Va./South County) and sophomore Taylor Pinchoff (Sylvan Lake, Mich./West Bloomfield) also picked up their 12th win of the season (12-3), as well as sixth straight, with an 8-3 defeat of Dorothy Safron and Carmen Lai at No. 1 doubles. Also winning 8-3 were juniors Ruxandra Andriescu (Brampton, Ontario, Canada/Turner Fenton) and Jacqueline Palmucci (Aurora, Colo./Cherokee Trail) at No. 3 doubles, taking down Danea Jonjic and Kimberly Milla to improve to 9-2 as a pair this spring.
The Dukes picked up five of six singles points to take the match 6-1, including four of five wins in two sets. Only Wirth’s match-up against Olivia Heim went to three sets as she came back from a 7-5 loss in set one to take set two 6-2 and clinched in the set-three tiebreaker 10-4. She finished the regular season with a 12-3 record, including 5-1 against CAA opponents.
The lone Delaware point came at No. 2 singles where Palmucci fell to Safron 6-4, 6-3 to snap her four-match win streak. Palmucci heads into the conference tournament with a 9-7 record this spring.
In their final regular-season matches at the collegiate level, both Bulling and fellow senior Megan Douglass (Wilton, Conn./St. Luke’s) picked up wins against the Blue Hens. Bulling moved to 12-4 overall with a 6-3, 6-1 victory against Naumova at No. 4 singles. Douglass jumped to 11-4 this spring with a 6-2, 6-3 defeat of Harrington at No. 6 singles.
Andriescu closed the regular season rolling Lai 6-0, 6-1 at No. 3 singles and improved to 8-8 on the season. Pinchoff upped her record to 9-8 when she dropped Jonjic 6-0, 6-4 at No. 1 singles.
As a team, Madison heads into the conference tournament on a three-match win-streak and has won nine of its last 11 matches overall. Four individual Dukes (Andriescu, Douglass, Pinchoff, Wirth) also ride three-match win-streaks into the league championship event.
JMU heads to Williamsburg, Va., on April 18 to open the CAA Conference tournament.