Missing its top singles player, Charlotte women's tennis took its first home loss of the season in the next-to-last scheduled home tilt, 4-3 to Gardner-Webb on Monday afternoon at the Halton-Wagner Tennis Complex. The 49ers slip to 13-3 on the season, 9-1 in home matches. The Runnin' Bulldogs are 12-8 this season.
With a juggled lineup, the 49ers split the first two doubles matches, and were leading in the third match when a GWU player was forced to retire. Junior Anna Ekelund (Lomma, Sweden) and freshman Lisa Grosselius (Molndal, Sweden) played up to number one and won their tenth-straight match together, 8-6. The pair is 17-1 this season, including a 14-1 record in dual matches.
Sophomore Emmanuelle Briant (La Cadiere d'Azur, France) and senior Andrea Rivera (Lima, Peru) were leading 4-3 at number three before the retirement forced the decision. It was their first time playing together this season. The win for Rivera gives her 75 for her career, taking sole possession of second place on the all-time list at Charlotte.
Rivera was leading 5-2 at number one before he opponent was forced to retire for a second 49er point. Four of the other five singles matches went to a third set, with Briant capturing the win at number six, 7-6 (5), 4-6, 6-3 for the 49ers point at the end of the afternoon.
Rivera is 14-6 this season, winning both matches when she played at number one. She got into a tie for sixth place on the all-time list for singles wins at Charlotte, with 61.
Briant is 3-0 in dual matches this season, winning at four, five and six in the lineup.
The final home match of the season for Charlotte will be Wednesday at 3 p.m. versus UNC Greensboro. It will be the final home match for Rivera, the team's lone senior.