SPARTANBURG, S.C. – In the last two seasons the Lipscomb women’s tennis team has taken another step forward in the Atlantic Sun Tournament.
Two years ago they lost in the first round. Last year they beat Northern Kentucky in the first round and lost to UNF in the semifinals.
Friday afternoon at noon they will take their first step in the A-Sun Tournament as the No. 4 seed facing No. 5 Kennesaw State. Coach Jamie Aid wants a first round win, but she also wants her team to make another step overall in the tournament and advance to the finals.
“Going to the tournament has become an expectation for our program,” Aid said. “This group of girls have made this a program expectation.
“Our girls play really well on the road, for whatever reason. I think they are a focused group.”
Lipscomb is 13-7, 3-3 in the conference. Kennesaw State is 3-16, 2-4 in the A-Sun. This is the second A-Sun appearance for the Owls. The next win by the Lady Bisons will set a victory record for the season.
“We are not dissatisfied going in as the fourth seed, but we had some what ifs this season,” Aid said. “We don’t want to end the season with any what ifs.
“We should have won the doubles point against Florida Gulf Coast. We should have won the doubles set against Stetson. That was the difference in that match. I don’t think our team is satisfied with where it is seeded.”
The sparks for the team this season have been Laura Kent at No.3 and Hanna Victorsson at No. 4.
Kent, selected as a first team all-conference player for the second year in a row, is 12-4, 4-1 in A-Sun matches. Victorsson is 14-4, the most singles wins for the Lady Bisons this season, and the second best overall record in the conference. A second team all-conference pick, Victorsson is 4-2 in conference matches.
“Our No. 3 through No. 6 have been able to hit some high percentages,” Aid said. “Laura does real well and Hanna is being really productive. Danielle Kinnen is healthy right now at No. 5 and Lorena Djuknic has been awesome with her energy and engagement on court the last two weeks."
The doubles point has been strong for Lipscomb this season. They are 10-6 in doubles matches against A-Sun teams.
The two teams met at Kennesaw State April 16 and Lipscomb won 6-1. Aid admits it is a challenge to play a team again so close to the last time they met, but that it also has some advantages.
“We have two tough matches ahead of us,” Aid said. “If we beat Kennesaw we will play UNF in semifinals again.
“We have had too many matches where we were almost there. It is frustrating and at the same time motivating. Our girls want to end this season on a high note.”