UW-Whitewater Women’s Tennis Earns 13th Straight WIAC Title
The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater women’s tennis team captured its 13th consecutive conference title and 20th in program history Sunday on the second and final day of the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championship (presented by Culver’s) at Nielsen Tennis Stadium in Madison.
The Warhawks amassed 54 points in the championship to edge UW-Eau Claire, which finished with 52.
The WIAC Championship accounts for two-thirds of the conference title. UW-Whitewater won all six of its league dual meets during the regular season to secure all seven points in the remaining third.
By claiming the league championship, the Warhawks earned the right to host the four-team WIAC Team Tournament, which is scheduled for April 25. The winner of the tournament will earn the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Championship, which begins May 8.
Sophomore Elsie Ha picked up her first career WIAC championship with a 6-2, 6-0 triumph over UW-Eau Claire at No. 6 singles. Sophomore Jessica Minkov was next on the board with her second league title, collecting a 6-3, 7-5 win at No. 4 against UW-Eau Claire. Both Ha and Minkov were top seeds in their respective brackets and earned straight-set victories in the semifinals.
Senior Madeline Slicker earned her second straight championship at No. 5 singles, recovering from a first-set loss for a 4-6, 6-4, 1-0 (11-9) triumph over UW-Eau Claire in the final. The draw’s top seed, Slicker punched her ticket to the title match with a 6-2, 6-0 win over UW-Oshkosh.
Junior Sabrina Palavra finished as runner-up at the third flight, falling 7-6 (3), 6-2 in the final against UW-La Crosse. Junior Paige Nierman was edged in three sets in her semifinal at No. 1, but recovered nicely for a 6-1, 7-5 victory in the third-place match against UW-Oshkosh.
Sophomore Olivia Kraft was also narrowly defeated in her semifinal match at No. 2, and ended up placing fourth in the bracket.
Sophomore Molly Rueth and freshman Megan Setter finished their weekend at 2-0 in the second draw for their first career WIAC title. The duo bested UW-Oshkosh by an 8-6 score in the semifinal before combining for an 8-5 triumph in the final against UW-Eau Claire.
Kraft and freshman Courtney Day made it two out of three for the Warhawks in doubles with their first championship, finishing 2-0 at the No. 3 draw. The pair upended UW-River Falls 8-2 in the semifinals and registered an 8-4 win over UW-Eau Claire.
Nierman and Palavra finished fourth at No. 1 doubles.
For the second straight season, Slicker was named UW-Whitewater’s representative on the WIAC All-Sportsmanship Team.
UW-Whitewater’s spring season officially begins March 7 against Division I Milwaukee. An alumni event is scheduled for March 6 at Lake Geneva Tennis in Lake Geneva.
Submitted and photos provided by:
Assistant Athletic Director, Strategic Communications and Branding