April 25, 2010
Northwest Finishes Second at MIAA Tournament
KANSAS CITY, Mo.-Second-seeded Washburn atoned from a regular season loss to top-seeded Northwest Missouri State by beating the Bearcats 5-3 in the championship match of the MIAA Tournament Sunday. It's Northwest's first loss in 13 matches.
The win nets the Ichabods (14-6) the league's automatic bid into the NCAA tournament. The loss will likely keep the Bearcats (17-7) out of the tournament for the first time in 16 seasons. The tournament bracket is expected be released Wednesday.
Morgan Rainey and Whitney Zitsch helped turn the tables against Northwest this time around. The duo lost an 8-3 doubles decision to Northwest's Lisa Pendrak and Veronica Castilla back on April 12 during Northwest's 6-3 dual win. Rainey and Zitsch won 8-4 Sunday. Zitch then beat Castilla 6-3, 6-3 in singles play. Castilla won the regular-season matchup 6-3, 6-2.
Northwest sophomore and top player Erika Leston returned to the lineup for the championship match after missing the last five contests due to a leg injury, but was unable to secure a point. Washburn won two out of three doubles matches and swept the top three singles matches.
The Bearcats had little trouble reaching the championship match, sweeping eighth-seeded Missouri Western 5-0 in the quarterfinals and topping fifth-seeded Nebraska-Omaha 5-1 in the semifinals. Both of those matches took place Saturday. Freshman Sureena Weir won her 12th consecutive singles match in the process and finished with a team-best singles record of 18-4.
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