Women’s Tennis Recap: Freshman Pleiman Pulls Out A Win For Flyers

Michael Crouchley
Staff Writer

Freshman Kelly Pleiman was able to save the day for Dayton’s women’s tennis team by pulling out a deciding win from the No. 5 singles spot, helping the Flyers to a 4-3 victory over Illinois State on Sunday.

“Having your team cheer for you, it’s high energy, probably the highest energy we get,” Pleiman said. “And our team is great at cheering.”

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The Flyers found themselves having to dig out of a hole early. While seniors Jade and Jackie Kawamoto were able to win their doubles match, the Flyers dropped the other two, giving Illinois State the 1-0 lead heading into the singles matches.

“You lose to those same players in doubles it’s tough to think you can beat them in singles,” said coach Erica Echko.

But that’s exactly what the Flyers did. Jade Kawamoto was the first to finish in singles, beating her opponent in two straight sets. Jackie Kawamoto and junior Mattea Kilstofte also took straight sets putting the score at 3-3 with only one match left to play.

After the dropping the first set, Pleiman was able to two straight to give the Flyers the win in a nail-biter.
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“I think I was just more consistent,” Pleiman said. “In the first set I was playing the other girl’s game. By the third set I think I was controlling the tempo and staying calm.”

Illinois State had won six of their last seven matches before coming up against the Flyers, who now sit at 7-5 on the season.

“It gives us some good momentum going into next weekend,” Echko said.

“We’re playing Rhode Island, who’s a team that we beat during the season but they upset us in the first round of conference.”

The Flyers head to Rhode Island for a doubleheader next weekend. They try to redeem themselves from last year’s loss on March 2 at 6 p.m. They take on Providence the next day at 8 a.m.

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Photo Taken From daytonflyers.com.