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by Janel Foster, staff writer

From March 29 to April 12 the HPU men’s and women’s tennis team faced off with the nation’s top teams on the mainland and on the Big Island. On their trip they played against universities in South Carolina and Georgia, and most recently in Kona and Hilo on the Big Island.
In the first match on the East Coast, both teams fell to Valdosta State University. The men’s team fell 4-5 to VSU and the Lady Sea Warriors dropped a 6-3 defeat to the Lady Blazers who were ranked No. 3 nationally.
On March 31, the Sea Warriors played in Savannah, Ga, against Armstrong Atlantic State University. The HPU men’s and
women’s tennis teams both fell to the nationally ranked Pirates 1-8. Although HPU fell, they lost their doubles in tiebreaks, and the singles ended in three sets with close results. “It was a very tough match,” said Coach Stefan Pampulov, “but the close results show that we can keep up with the best teams on the mainland.”
HPU women’s team fell 9-6 but is still 18th-ranked and the 6th-ranked men’s team drops to 10-3 in PacWest. Although the HPU women’s team had a hard time measuring up to the top-ranked and 2008 National Champion Lady Pirates, they grabbed a win in doubles as Alexsandra Stankovic and Sandra Wikstrom defeated Kathleen Henry and Tina Ronel, 8-6. In singles action, Nikola Petrov nearly knocked off No. 1 Edualdo Bonet 6-3, 7-6 (10-5). No. 46
Daniel Luedi gave HPU their lone point, defeating Mikk
Irdoja 3-6, 6-2, 10-5.
On April 1, the Sea
Warriors traveled to South Carolina to fight against the University of South Carolina-Aiken. The
ladies defeated USCA 9-0 while the men fell to 10th-ranked South Carolina-
Aiken, 4-5. USCA Lady Sea Warriors improved to 10-6 in PacWest, won every singles match highlighted by Vlckova who topped Stephanie Humphrey 6-1, 6-0. On the men´s side No. 46 Daniel Luedi had the biggest win, topping Christopher Kaetz 6-2, 1-6, 6-2. Sebastian Bader and Jan Hroch also won their singles.
The Sea Warrior tennis teams traveled back to Georgia for their next tournament on April 3. Hosting this tournament was Georgia College and State University in Milledgeville. HPU men’s and women’s teams topped victorious the nationally ranked men’s (4th) and women’s (19th) Bobcats. The Sea Warrior Ladies topped Georgia State
College 9-0. Men improved to 11-4 in handing the fourth-ranked Bobcats their first home loss of the year, and won a 7-2 victory. On the ladies side, HPU won all three doubles with an impressive win of 8-0 by Anastasiya Ageychik and Lauren Shin at No. 2 doubles. The women’s team also won all six singles matches. 12th-ranked Zora Vlckova topped 22nd- ranked
Marjorie Ceppo 6-2, 6-1 in No.1 singles.
Although HPU men´s tennis fell to Valdosta State and top-ranked Armstrong Atlantic, they
defeated then fourth-ranked
Georgia State & College, who previously defeated Armstrong Atlantic. For this victory, the HPU men’s tennis team received No.5 in the latest ITA National Poll. This announcement was made by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association national office on April 7. The
women’s tennis team moved up three spots to rank 15. The Lady Sea Warriors lost against 4th-ranked Valdosta State and 5th-ranked Armstrong Atlantic but the HPU women’s team shutout both South Carolina-Aiken and Georgia College & State. In addition, HPU is one of 15 schools with both men’s and women’s tennis programs ranked in the Top 25.
After a short break, the Sea Warriors traveled to the Big Island to close the regular season. On April 8, the women played against Dixie State College and won 9-0 in the opening round for the final of the PacWest Conference Women’s Tennis Championships in Kona on April 9-11. The HPU women’s tennis team topped Dixie State College again 9-0 on April 9, highlighted by 12th-ranked singles player Zora Vlckova, who defeated Ashley Lafeen 6-1, 6-0. Nina Mihova, who is ranked No. 40, topped Aexandria Bergen 6-0, 6-0.
The men´s team played against University of
Hawai‘i-Hilo on April 11-12. The Sea Warriors defeated UH-Hilo 8-1, and
improved their results to 12-4. In doubles play, the pair of Nikola Petrov and Daniel Luedi topped Luis Gonzaga and Stephen Royalty 9-7. “I really like playing with him. Our styles match pretty well,” Petrov said about his partner
Luedi, “He has an amazing touch while my game is powerful.” The Sea Warriors won all six singles games, highlighted by Petrov’s win against Laurent Colombo 6-3, 6-1.
On April 12, HPU Men´s tennis won against UH-Hilo 5-1, and showed their talent in doubles again: Hendrik Bode and Sebastian Bader topped Luis Gonzaga and Stephen Royalty, 8-3.“They have a good team, but we were just a little better,” Bader, a sophomore from Austria, said about the victory. Nikola Petrov and Anton Samuilau defeated Justin Dugan and Aaron Tada 8-2. The Sea Warriors also showed a strong singles play: On the men´s side Petrov, Bode, and Samuilau each won their singles games.
On the women´s side, HPU also topped UH-Hilo 5-1 on April 10 and 12. Vlckova won against Castaing 6-0, 6-2, and Nina Mihova defeated Campbell 6-3, 7-5.
In doubles, Zora
Vlckova and Ingrid Cseh defeated Eve Castaing and Christie Pagatpatan, 9-7. Unfortunately the ladies fell to BYU-Hawai‘i, (5-2) on April 11 14-7, while the Lady Seasiders improved their results to 25-0.
After this successful season, the men’s team still holds the top spot in the West Region, and five HPU players are ranked in the region’s Top 15 singles, with Hendrik Bode ranked No. 3 as a great victory. Now both teams are getting ready for the NCAA Regional Tournament on May 7-9. As the West Region’s top-ranked team, the men’s team will probably host the first match against UC-San Diego.


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