Marlins fall 6-2 to Union College in SC

Senior Kellen Phillips
Senior Kellen Phillips
Hilton Head, Sc. - The Virginia Wesleyan women's tennis team traveled to Hilton Head, SC on Saturday to take part in Spring Tennis Fest hosted by the Professional Tennis Registry.  
Due to a rainy forecast for Sunday the Marlin's opening match against Union College was moved up to Saturday night at 7:30 PM.  Due to the late start time the match was played using the no-ad format and playing singles first.  After an 8 hour drive south for the Marlins the match opened up with singles play where VWU found themselves in a number of close matches.  At #4 singles, freshman Courtney Simmons (Reevesville, SC) clawed her way back in the 2nd set before dropping the match 6-1, 7-6 (3).  At #3 junior Katie Staman (Lancaster, PA) jumped out to an early lead and captured the first set 6-3 before falling to Julianne Loree 3-6, 6-2, 10-4.  
The Marlins continue to demonstrate the quality of their depth when senior Kellen Phillips (Alexandria, VA) and junior Kristina Sabelstrom (Colorado Springs, CO) captured #5 & #6 singles 6-2, 6-3 and 6-1, 6-0 respectively.  With the Marlins down 3-2 all eyes shifted to court 2 as freshman Audrey Bally (Nice, France) was down a set but up 4-1 in the 2nd.  After multiple deuce games Union's freshman Megan Brown (Westport, CT) found a way to climb out of the 1-4 hole to take the match 7-5, 6-4.
With the Marlins down 4-2 after singles they would need to sweep all three doubles in order to walk away with the win.  At #1 doubles, Marlin freshman Makayla Velic (Jacksonville, FL) and Audrey Bally kept things close until 6-5 but fell short in a 8-5 decision giving Union the deciding match.  
With the loss the Marlins fall to 7-4 on the season while Union improves to 3-3.  Virginia Wesleyan University will next play against St. Thomas (MN) on Wednesday at 2 PM at the Hilton Head Beach and Tennis Resort.