Nov. 5, 1999
MOBILE, Ala. — The Florida State women’s tennis team began its
quest to earn a spot in the 2000 Rolex National Indoor Championships in
Dallas on February 3-6th. The singles champion and runner-up and the
doubles champion will automatically qualify for the Championships.
This year’s field in Mobile consists of some of the top-ranked
players in the country. Florida’s Whitney Laiho is the No. 1 seed and is
currently ranked 3rd in the country. Laiho’s teammate Stephanie Hazlett is
currently ranked 11th in the country. The No. 3 doubles team in the nation
is also at this year’s Regionals, South Alabama’s Martina Ondrejkova and
Iva Puflerova will be the top seed. The No. 2 seed will be the nation’s
fifth ranked team of Mariana Eberle and Mary Frey from Mississippi.
FSU entered seven players in this year’s tournament and three of
them have advanced to the round of 16 in their respective draws. In Draw
A, sophomore Alida Gallovits who two weeks ago won the Lady Seminole
Classic, won two matches Friday to advance to face Florida’s Traci Green in
the round of 16. Gallovits defeated Georgia’s Christa Grey 5-7, 6-3, 6-1
in the second round Friday. Other competitors for FSU in Draw A included
sophomore Jessica Balbuena and seniors Kia Asberg and Ali Weber. Balbuena
lost to Miami’s Alanna Broderick 7-6(0), 4-6, 6-4 in a hard fought first
round matchup. Asberg won her first round match against Mississippi
State’s seeded Ivana Belmaic in straight sets, 6-4, 6-4. Asberg dropped
her second round match to South Alabama’s Marketa Blazkeva 6-2, 6-2. Weber
dropped her first round match to Georgia’s seeded Lori Chen 6-2, 6-3.
Weber and Balbuena will play in consolation matches on Saturday.
In the singles B Draw, the draw’s top seed, FSU’s Marina Raic, won
her first match to advance to the round of 16. Raic defeated South
Florida’s Natalie Schwartz in three sets, 6-2, 4-6, 6-1. FSU’s Nanette
Duxin advanced to the round of 16 as well with a win over Samford’s Suzie
Carlberg, 6-2, 6-2. Duxin is seeded fifth in the B Draw. FSU junior
Natalie Carratala lost a tough first round matchup with Bethune Cookman’s
Aina R’Abel. Carratala lost the first set in a tiebreaker, won the second
set 6-0 before falling in the third set 6-4. It was the first singles
match of the year for Carratala, who just recently recovered from an injury
that only allowed her to only play doubles.
FSU has three teams in the doubles portion of the tournament.
Gallovits and Raic, Balbuena and Weber, Carratala and Duxin will play for
FSU. Gallovits and Raic and Balbuena and Weber are in the A Draw while
Carratala and Duxin will play in the B Draw.
Action resumes Saturday morning on the campus of South Alabama.