MARION, Ind. -- Indiana Wesleyan University women’s tennis defeated Marian (Ind.) in another epic contest and this one clinched the Crossroads League Tournament championship.
Just over two weeks ago in the regular season matchup it took a three set victory for Kristen Futrell at No. 5-singles with everyone watching to clinch the victory. This time the pressure went to Kim Mella in the No. 4-singles match with the team score tied 4-4.
Mella had a comeback victory in the first set to win a tie-breaker 7-6 but would lose 6-3 in the second set. During the third set Mella would trail 3-1 before staging the comeback to win 7-5 and clinch the league tournament championship.
Complicating the match for Mella was her tennis racquets. She used both of them today but both broke strings during her match. She was forced to finish the match with teammate Katie Wilson’s racquet.
Indiana Wesleyan opened the afternoon with a 2-1 advantage following the completion of doubles matches.
Wilson and Mella won 8-3 at the top spot while Kristen Futrell and Rachel Bottorff easily won 8-1 in No. 2-doubles. The No. 3 team of Kelsey Vessels and Rachael Heiniger fell 8-6.
Heading into singles the Wildcat knew they just needed a split to earn the team victory. Bottorff had the first win which came in No. 2-play with a 6-1, 6-0 win. Futrell ended her match quickly as well with a 6-1, 6-4 victory in No. 5-singles.
In other singles matches, Wilson lost 1-6, 2-6 at No. 1-singles, Heiniger fell 1-6, 0-6 at No. 3-singles, and Courtney Siepman dropped a 3-6, 0-6 decision at No. 6-singles.
The victory gives Indiana Wesleyan the Crossroads League automatic bid to the NAIA National Championship in Mobile, Alabama. The tournament runs May 13-17, 2014. Indiana Wesleyan advances to the national tournament for a record 15th time.
Indiana Wesleyan completes the fall season with a perfect 16-0 record and runs their winning streak during fall season to 240.