Doubles Play Leads Lobos Past Cougars

PROVO -- In its first outdoor home match of the season, the No. 19 BYU women's tennis team (16-5, 3-1) fell to conference foe No. 33 New Mexico in a 5-2 decision, suffering only its fifth loss of the season.

The Lobos got off to an early lead over the Cougars by winning the doubles match. BYU doubles team Barbora Zahnova and Sofia Holden pushed their match to a tiebreaker where they fell in seven straight to New Mexico's Sandy Lukowski and Maja Kovacak 9-8.

The Cougars struggled to win at the Nos. 2 and 3 doubles spots as well. Hadley Macfarlane and Olga Boulytcheva lost their match 8-6 and Rebecca Pike and Lu Oswald fell in an 8-6 decision.

In singles play, New Mexico's top seed Kovacek defeated Barbora Zahnova at the No. 1 spot to give the Lobos their second point of the match.

BYU had two big wins at the Nos. 3 and 4 positions where Lauren Jones routed her opponent in two straight and Boulytcheva blasted past Michelle Heidbrink in the third set tiebreaker. Jones and Boulytcheva scored the only two points for the Cougars.

"I thought Lauren Jones had a fantastic match today," head coach Craig Manning said. "She really showed a lot of heart and put together a tough three-set win."

Tacking on the third point for the Lobos was Tjasa Suvak as she edged MacFarlane in two straight sets. MacFarlane got down early and had a difficult time regaining momentum.

The deciding match was at the No. 2 spot where BYU's Holden fell to Iva Gersic, a freshman from Koprivnica, Croatia 6-4, 6-2.

"I was disappointed at the doubles loss," head coach Craig Manning said. "We had chances and lost them. At singles they were too good for us today. We just didn't handle the conditions all that well. It was a tough loss."

The women's tennis team will be back for its final home match tomorrow at 10 a.m. against Air Force. The match will be played on the BYU outdoor tennis courts. Admission is free and all fans are welcome.

BYU v. New Mexico

Doubles:

Lukowski/Kovacek (UNM) def. Zahnova/Holden (BYU) 9-8

Gersic/Ruiz-Fabrega (UNM) def. MacFarlane/Boulytcheva (BYU) 8-6

Heidbrink/Robertson (UNM) def. Pike/Olswald (BYU) 8-6

New Mexico wins the doubles point

Singles:

Kovacek (UNM) def. Barbora Zahnova (BYU) 6-4, 6-2

Gersic (UNM) def. Sofia Holden (BYU) 6-4, 6-2

Lauren Jones (BYU) def. Robertson (UNM) 6-3, 4-6, 6-4

Olga Boulytcheva (BYU) v. Heidbrink (UNM) 4-6, 7-5 (10-2)

Lukowski (UNM) def. Rebecca Pike (BYU) 7-6, 4-6 (8)

Suvak (UNM) def. Hadley MacFarlane (BYU) 7-5, 6-2