WICHITA FALLS, TX - Junior Chris Norrie and freshman Dillon Pineda earned wins at the bottom of the lineup to help rally No. 12 Midwestern State to a 5-4 victory over No. 29 Southwest Baptist (Mo.) Wednesday afternoon at the MSU Tennis Center.
The Mustangs extended their winning streak to four matches and improved to 6-1 overall with their third win over a nationally-ranked opponent this season.
Midwestern State cruised to an early 3-0 lead after sweeping doubles play. The 20th-ranked duo of senior Kyle Davidson and junior Ramon Toyos recorded an 8-4 win over No. 30 Sherif Abohabaga and Chris Blodig on court one to give the Mustangs the early advantage. Senior Zack Santagate and Pineda added an 8-4 win at No. 2 doubles before Norrie and freshman Radu Popa earned an 8-3 win at the No. 3 position.
Southwest Baptist (4-3) turned the tables on the home team to begin singles play, collecting three straight-set wins to even up the match. No. 39 Toyos forced a deciding third set on court two with a 6-3 win in the second set before SBU's Gyorgy Argoston gave the Bearcats the edge with a 6-3 win in the third.
At No. 6 singles, Pineda remained undefeated on the year with a 5-0 dual record following a 7-6 (4), 7-5 victory over Marcel Castillo to move the attention over to court five where Norrie was looking to record a straight-set win. The Wichita Falls native and Rider product came through for the Mustangs with a 6-3, 6-4 victory to complete the comeback and propel the Maroon and Gold to the win.
Midwestern State next takes on NCAA Division I Dartmouth in a 10 a.m. match Thursday at the SMU Tennis Complex in Dallas.
In a rematch of the 2015 NCAA quarterfinals, the No. 22 Midwestern State women's tennis team reigned supreme this go-around as the Mustangs snapped a three-match losing skid to No. 10 Southwest Baptist (Mo.) and recorded the program's first win over a top-10 program since 2007 with a 6-3 victory over the Bearcats at the MSU Tennis Center.
With Wednesday's win, Midwestern State notched its sixth-straight victory to improve to 7-1 in its 2016 campaign. The Mustangs earned their first win over the Bearcats since the 2013 season after SBU had recorded three-straight 5-4 victories over MSU with two coming last season including a victory in the Elite Eight. MSU's win over a top-10 team was the first for the Mustangs since earning a 6-3 victory over No. 10 Drury (Mo.) back on Mar. 19, 2007 in Wichita Falls.
The Mustangs took a 2-1 advantage following doubles play after senior Lauren Pineda and sophomore Amy Clifton rallied from an early deficit for an 8-4 win at No. 2 doubles to move to 8-0 on the season and give the edge to the Maroon and Gold. On court three, senior Maddie Schorlemmer and freshman Greta Lazzarotto teamed up for another 8-4 victory, claiming their fifth-straight win.
The depth of the Mustangs was too much for the Bearcats to overcome in singles as MSU claimed wins from No. 3 singles and down to earn the 6-3 win.
Lara Soares helped SBU even up the contest early on in singles play with a 6-2, 6-1 win over Lazzarotto at the No. 2 position. However, Pineda continued her hot streak to push her season record to 7-0 with a 6-1, 7-5 victory on court four to put the Mustangs back in front.
After No. 29 Christina Zentai knotted up the match at 3-3 with a 7-5, 6-4 win over No. 37 Schorlemmer at the top spot, freshman Eirini Kontaki pulled out a three-set win at No. 3, 6-2, 4-6, 6-2, to move to 6-1 on the year and pull the momentum back to the home team.
On court five, Clifton clinched the historic win for the Mustangs with a dominant 6-1, 6-1 victory before senior Lindsay Nochowicz remained undefeated in singles play this season at 4-0 by upping the MSU lead with a 6-2, 6-0 win at No. 6 singles to cap off the day.
Midwestern State returns to the MSU Tennis Center for an 11 a.m. match Friday against in-region foe Western New Mexico.