Kervy Robles, Sports Editor
Oklahoma Baptist women’s tennis team faces the 2016 season with new prospects in the roster.
Successful players such as Katya Shkot and Anastasia Baranova left a legacy hard to fulfill.
“It is a team with new faces,” student assistant Baranova said. “We did not know what to expect from the girls because the fall season was short.”
However, the Lady Bison have gone over the expectations and accomplished an impressive 4-1 overall record in the beginning of the campaign.
The women’s tennis team has showed important strengths throughout the first five matches of the season.
“We have a very deep lineup, and we all really get along as a team,” senior Olivia Charvat said. “We like to go out with the mindset of ‘this just another match that we need to win’ no matter who our opponents are.”
Last Saturday, OBU visited Tahlequah in search of another Top 25 win against No. 9 Northeastern State University.
“Going into the match, we did not feel the pressure of facing a ranked team,” sophomore Madeleine Boepple said. “We know the type of game we all like to play, and we have been able to win in big moments so far.”
Charvat and Boepple won their single matches by 7-5-6-3 and 6-0-6-3, respectively.
However, NSU reacted rapidly and showed resistance winning two singles matches against freshman Rouxanne Janse van Rensburg and senior Alex Morales.
With a tied overall score, it was turn for freshman Kim Moosbacher to give OBU a momentary lead.
“It was hard for me to win the first set, and in the second [set] my opponent got better and better,” Moosbacher said. “In the final set, I controlled my emotions, and it became one of the best matches of my life.”
Moosbacher won the match in a frenetic 6-4, 3-6 and 6-3.
It was time for sophomore Alex Bowers to extend the score for the Lady Bison.
“It was a very close match where my opponent never gave up,” Bowers said. “I try to always fight every single match. It was happy to be able to win for my team.”
Bowers dominated its opponent with a 7-5-7-6 match. Posteriorly, the Lady Bison struggled losing two doubles matches.
With parity in the overall score, Moosbacher and van Rensburg were responsible for the last match point.
“Before jumping into the court, I had a great feeling about the game,” Moosbacher said. “She [van Rensburg] makes everything easier for me and it ended up being a big win for the team.”
The Lady Bison earned a vital triumph, 5-4, against a powerful rival on the road. Now, the expectations are high for this talented team.
“We are looking forward to face new challenges,” student assistant Baranova said. “We are capable to get a ring. We all want to win that NCCAA championship.”
The Lady Bison will host Central Oklahoma March 1 at 2 p.m.