ST. PETER, Minn. (Blugolds.com) – The UW-Eau Claire women's tennis team played in a full weekend of events, as players competed in both the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Regionals and the Gustavus Fall Invitational hosted by Gustavus Adolphus College (Minn.).
Taylor Heltne (Jr.-Inver Grove Heights, Minn./Simley) led the three Blugolds competing in the ITA Regionals. Heltne advanced to the top 16 in singles play after winning her first two matches 6-2, 6-2 and 6-1, 7-6. Heltne's Carleton College (Minn.) challenger bested her in the third match, however, as Heltne fell 6-4, 6-3.
Gillman and Gretchen Bachmeier (Jr.-Eau Claire, Wis./North) also competed in the singles competition, but both lost in the first round.
UW-Whitewater earned both the singles and doubles championships of the ITA Regional tournament. The winning players will advance to play at the ITA National Small College Championships Oct. 13-16 in Mobile, Ala.
The Blugolds found more success in the Gustavus Fall Invitational. Two Eau Claire competitors, Bachmeier and Maddie Johnson (Fr.-Lakeville, Minn./South), won championships in their respective flights. Bachmeier and Johnson teamed up to win the doubles competition. After playing four close matches – two were won by results of 9-8 and 9-7 – the pair defeated a UW-La Crosse team 8-2 for the championship.
Johnson also won a championship in the singles third flight. After beating three opponents fairly quickly – she gave up just four games in the first two matches – Johnson battled a Luther College (Iowa) opponent for the championship. Johnson dropped the first set 7-5, but rallied to take the remaining sets 7-5, 10-6.
Stephanie Wolf (So.-Verona, Wis./Verona Area) and Renee Nelson (Fr.-Madison, Wis./La Follette) were the only other Blugolds to record wins in the Gustavus Fall Invite singles competition. Both Wolf and Nelson won two matches in their respective flights before falling in the third round.
The Blugolds will return to Eau Claire to host Lawrence University (Wis.) Sunday, Oct. 2. Match time is set for 1 p.m.