(Posted September 7, 2006)

Grantham, Pa. ? The Juniata College women?s tennis team was unable to open its season with a victory Thursday afternoon against Messiah College. But the Eagles came about as close as a team can come without winning as Juniata dropped a 5-4 decision to the Falcons in Commonwealth Conference action. Messiah is now 2-0 on the season while Juniata fell to 0-1. The match was highlighted by several close contests, particularly on the singles courts where four of the six outings went to a third set. Juniata found itself in an early hole as Messiah took two of the three doubles matches. Aggie Kwon (Cumberland Valley/Enola) and Amanda Fontana (Trinity/Mechanicsburg) claimed an 8-5 win at second doubles, but the Eagles could not earn wins at either of the two other positions. Caroline Weisser (York Suburban/York) and Maggie Wolenter (Audubon/Audubon, N.J.) dropped a tight 8-6 match at first doubles, while Molly Coursey (Westminster/Hanover) and Liana James (Boulder/Boulder, Colo.) fell by an 8-4 score at third doubles. Juniata bounced back in singles, as the team?s split the three singles match, but the Eagles were unable to pull out wins in several tight matches to take the overall victory. Both of the singles matches won in straight sets went to Juniata as Fontana was a 6-1, 6-0 victor at first singles and Coursey posted a 64, 7-5 victory at the fifth singles position. Kwon then claimed a hard-fought 6-3, 5-7, 6-1 victory at fourth singles to put Juniata in position for a win. But Weisser was upended 6-0, 5-7, 6-3 at the second singles position, Wolenter fell 2-6, 6-4, 6-0 at third singles and Ariel Otruba (Mansfield/Mansfield) suffered a 6-3, 3-6, 6-4 set-back Despite the loss, the result shows a solid improvement for the Eagles who suffered an 8-1 loss at the hands of Messiah last season. Juniata will return to action on Saturday as the Eagles welcome Washington & Jefferson for a non-conference match. ###

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