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USJ Edges WestConn In Regular Season Finale Monday, 5-4

USJ Edges WestConn In Regular Season Finale Monday, 5-4

DANBURY, Conn. – The University of Saint Joseph (USJ) women's tennis team finished the regular season in style by edging Western Connecticut State University (WCSU), 5-4, in a non-conference match at the Westside Courts Monday night. With the victory, USJ finishes the regular season with a 5-6 record, and won three of its final four matches ahead of its Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Tournament First Round match on Wednesday against Eastern Nazarene. It marks the first time since 2016 the Blue Jays will host a playoff match.

The Blue Jays took two of three doubles matches for the third straight event, as sophomore Kathleen Gilland (Wethersfield, Conn.) and junior captain Emily Kerr (Portland, Conn.) won in the first match by a score of 8-5, while junior Elaina Griffiths (Guilford, Conn.) and sophomore Ananya Srivatsav (South Windsor, Conn.) secured another win together at No. 2 Doubles, 8-4.

In singles, both squads played their hearts out as victories came on both sides of the aisle. Gilland and Srivatsav claimed victory at No. 1 and No. 4 Singles, respectively. WestConn impressed in their own right at No. 2, No. 5 and No. 6 Singles to tie the score at four-all. Kerr's winning streak ended at three straight singles victories Monday after a tight loss in No. 2 Singles, but she set the bar high with that streak over a 10-day span.

With the match result up for grabs in a 4-4 tie, it all came down to Griffiths at #3 Singles, who split the first two sets with freshman Sophie Charbonneau (Oakville, Conn.) of WCSU. Griffiths wouldn't back down though, as she torpedoed her way to a match-deciding 6-2 third set triumph under the lights of the Westside Courts. USJ has the momentum on their side as the playoffs (and a rematch with Eastern Nazarene) wait in the wings.

USJ 5 | WCSU 4

COACH QUOTE [Karen Piazza] "It was a tight one, that's for sure. Our doubles teams are really in sync right now. We had great performances in singles as well. We have really made progress throughout the season, and have gotten smarter in how we construct our points. Everyone is in great spirits...we are ready to go Wednesday!"

1. Kathleen Gilland/Emily Kerr (USJ) def. Melanie Grasso/Sarah Cipriano (WCSU) 8-5
2. Elaina Griffiths/Ananya Srivatsav (USJ) def. Brooke Stillman/Sophie Charbonneau (WCSU) 8-4
3. Mackenzie Riofrio/Maria Madden (WCSU) def. Julia Michaud/Anna Nemergut (USJ) 8-2

1. Kathleen Gilland (USJ) def. Sarah Cipriano (WCSU) 6-2, 6-1
2. Melanie Grasso (WCSU) def. Emily Kerr (USJ) 6-4, 6-2
3. Elaina Griffiths (USJ) def. Sophie Charbonneau (WCSU) 6-4, 4-6, 6-2
4. Ananya Srivatsav (USJ) def. Maria Madden (WCSU) 6-3, 6-3
5. Brooke Stillman (WCSU) def. Julia Michaud (USJ) 7-5, 6-2
6. Mackenzie Riofrio (WCSU) def. Jenna Griffith (USJ) 6-0, 6-0

The Blue Jays are playoff bound, and will host the first round of the GNAC Tournament for the first time in five years on Wednesday, October 13, at 3:30 p.m. against the Lions of Eastern Nazarene, the same team USJ defeated on Senior Day on October 9, 6-3.

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