ORLANDO, Fla. - Putting forth a strong effort, the Saint Joseph's women's tennis team's 2016-17 season came to a close on Wednesday as the 12th seeded Hawks fell to fifth seed Saint Louis, 4-0, in the first round of the Atlantic 10 Championship.
Opening the day with doubles play at the USTA National Campus, the Billikens took the opening point of the match with wins at the first and third flights. Seniors Claire Minnoe and Alex Zachem fought hard at the top flight, but fell to sisters Eleonore and Verginie Tchakatova, 6-2.
Moving to singles action, Verginie Tchakatova topped SJU sophomore Isis Gill-Reid at the third flight, 6-0, 6-2, while Ally McKenzie downed Zachem, 6-1, 6-0, at the fourth flight.
The Hawks (6-16) had contested matches for Maureen Devlin, Katherine Devlin and Contrata being played when the match was called as Saint Louis captured the final point it needed as SJU's Minnoe dropped a 6-3, 6-0 decision to Aspen Cervin at the top flight.
"Saint Louis was not taking us lightly and beat us in our strong positions of seniors. Our ladies gave a strong and gallant fight, but the talented Billikens gave us no quarter," said SJU head coach Ian Crookenden. "Overall, a tough season, but not a discouraging one as we had many positive experiences."
A four-year letterwinner and 2015-16 A-10 All-Conference Second Team selection, Minnoe capped her career fourth all-time in wins (48), while classmate Zachem finished her SJU career 10th all-time in wins (39), with her 15 victories at the fourth singles flight tied for most in program history. Finishing with a flurry, Contrata's team-high 17 singles wins this year are tied for eighth most wins in a single-season, while in the sixth flight she tied for fourth-most wins in a career (11) and tied for fourth-most wins in a season with nine in 2016-17.
1. Eleonore Tchakatova/Verginie Tchakatova (SLU) def. Claire Minnoe/Alex Zachem (SJU) 6-2
2. Aspen Cervin/Ariana Rodriguez (SLU) vs. Maureen Devlin/Maddie Graziani (SJU) 5-1 unfinished
3. Ally McKenzie/Cassie McKenzie (SLU) def. Sarah Contrata/Katherine Devline (SJU) 6-1
1. Aspen Cervin (SLU) def. Claire Minnoe (SJU) 6-3, 6-0
2. Eleonore Tchakatova (SLU) vs. Maureen Devlin (SJU) 6-1, 5-2 unfinished
3. Verginie Tchakatova (SLU) def. Isis Gill-Reid (SJU) 6-0, 6-2
4. Ally McKenzie (SLU) def. Alex Zachem (SJU) 6-1, 6-0
5. Cassie McKenbzie (SLU) vs. Katherine Devlin (SJU) 6-2, 2-4 unfinished
6. Mariluz Rojo Domingo (SLU) vs. Sarah Contrata (SJU) 5-5 unfinished