Valparaiso opened the 2011 spring season on Saturday afternoon but ran into a tough Ball State squad, falling to the Cardinals 7-0 at the Northwest Athletic Club in Michigan City, Ind.
The Crusaders battled during doubles play, but were not able to come up with a win as Ball State (2-2) took the day’s first point. Katie Bilyeu (Terre Haute, Ind./South Vigo H.S.) and Kristin Zakiewicz (Bristol, Ind./Northridge H.S.) played Sarah Hebble and Georgina Thomson tough at the top spot before falling 8-4. Stephanie York (Elkhart, Ind./Jimtown H.S.) and Jackie O’Reilly (Green Bay, Wis./DePere H.S.) fell 8-2 at number two doubles against Kylee Johnson and Kristel Sanders. Hayley Hall and Paola Rodriguez concluded with an 8-1 win at the third spot over Brittany O’Reilly (Green Bay, Wis./Southwest H.S.) and Aubree Zdanovec (Appleton, Wis./East H.S.).
The Cardinals surrendered just two games total in singles play, winning all six spots in straight sets. Jackie O’Reilly took a game from Hebble at the second spot falling 6-0, 6-1 while York dropped a 6-1, 6-0 decision to Johnson at number four. The other four matches were won by Ball State 6-0, 6-0 as Thomson topped Brittany O’Reilly at the top, Hall downed Zakiewicz at three, Sanders topped Bilyeu at five, and Rodriguez spoiled Zdanovec’s collegiate debut at sixth singles.
Valparaiso (0-1) returns to action next Saturday afternoon as the Crusaders head to Michigan to face Kalamazoo. First serve is set for 9 a.m. CST.