March 20, 2014
DeKALB, Ill. - NIU women's tennis is back in action this weekend with two matches on the road. The Huskies are beginning conference play away from NIU after splitting two matches over spring break last week. The team will face Ball State (10-6) on Friday, March 21 at 1:00 p.m. in Muncie, Ind. On Saturday, it'll travel to Oxford, Ohio to take on Miami (Ohio) (7-4) at 1:00 p.m. Both times are central.
Last week was spring break, and the Huskies traveled south to Georgia to face two of the top NAIA women's teams. The Huskies started things off with Brenau on Monday, March 10. They beat the Tigers there, 6-1. Next was Georgia Gwinnett on Tuesday, March 11. This ended in a 6-1 loss for the Huskies. After splitting these two affairs, NIU is 5-5 on the season.
Nelle Youel had a great spring break for the Huskies. She won both of her singles matches to improve to 6-4 this spring. Youel had a tough start to the season, going 0-3 to begin 2014. After winning six of seven, she has reestablished herself as a top women's tennis athlete. For her efforts last week, Youel was named MAC Women's Tennis Singles Player of the Week.
Ball State has had a fine season thus far at 10-6. The Cardinals come into the match against NIU having won two of their last three contests. Courtney Earnest has been a tough singles player for her team this year. She is 10-3 this spring with all of her matches coming in either the No. 1 or No. 2.
The Miami Redhawks currently stand at 7-4. They're coming off a doubleheader on Monday, March 10 in which they won 7-0 against Wyoming but lost 4-3 against Nebraska. Andreea Badileanu is having an exceptional spring season. She is 10-1 in 2014, having won seven singles matches in a row.
Following the completion of the match against the Redhawks on Saturday, the Huskies will return home. They'll have a week to get ready for Akron. On Friday, March 28, NIU will take on the Zips at 1:00 p.m. at the Boylan Tennis Center in Rockford, Ill.