Lady Patriots fall to Bluefield State College


Photo by: Elodi Breg

Kailey Eggert prepares to receive the ball from Bluefield State College.

In the season opener for both Patriot tennis teams, the women’s tennis team lost a tough match against Bluefield State College 4-2 at 12 p.m. on Feb. 6 at the Dr. Eddie Floyd Tennis Center.

The first event of the tournament was doubles. The matchups were as follows: Hermon Mikael (sophomore) and Viktoria Leth (freshman); Eva Zannier (junior) and Nargiza Yakhyaeva (freshman); and Camryn Cassetori (freshman) and Kailey Eggert (senior).

Although the Mikael-Leth pair won their match (by default since the last set was unfinished), the other two pairs dropped their matches to Bluefield State, causing the Patriots to lose the doubles event.

The singles event went better for the Lady Patriots, with half of the team defeating their respective opponents. Mikael defeated her Bluefield State opponent 6-1 and 6-3 in two sets. Leth played a close match, but won by default, playing her first set 6-1 and ending the second set with a 6-6 tie. Cassetori won her match in two sets, 6-3 and 6-1.

Mikael, a sophomore business marketing and human resources double major, though disappointed in the loss, was happy that the season was able to happen. With COVID-19 becoming a factor last year, the previous tennis season was unfortunately cut short.

“It felt really good [to be back],” Mikael said. “We were just happy we could have a game.”

Mikael was also very optimistic about the rest of the season, saying the losses are just an opportunity for growth and future success.

“As long as we practice and support each other, we can be a really good team,” Mikael said. “I am really excited.”

Cassetori, a freshman English major, was ecstatic to play and win her first singles college match.

“It was such a surreal experience,” Cassetori said. ”I was definitely a little nervous, but I was also filled with excitement and the drive to win.”

She was able to defeat her opponent in singles and is only looking at the positives as the tennis season starts.

“If I am being honest, I definitely believe our team could have won that match,” Cassetori said. “I’m happy with everyone’s performance, but I think it’s always better to strive for more and to try to be better. I’m hoping as the season goes on, we see more success.”

Cassetori and the rest of the Lady Patriots are ready to get back on the court and prepare for the rest of the season.

“I think everyone is really motivated and wants to win,” Cassetori said. “I think that will be a key factor in matches to come.”