PSU Tennis goes out with a bang

This past Saturday in Gold River, California, the Portland State women’s tennis team finished their most successful season in school history.

The Vikings finished 10–7 overall and 6–3 in conference play before losing in the Big Sky conference semifinals against the Montana Grizzlies (16–7, 9–0).

It was April 19 when the Vikings clinched their playoff spot against Idaho State. Dané Vorster and Megan Govi beat Idaho State’s Laura Theus and Marian Tangarife 8–1, making it their fifth conference doubles win of the season, tying the school record set last year by Govi and sophomore Kelsey Fry. This record was then broken the very next week, as PSU went on to close their season with a win against the Eastern Washington Eagles. The Vikings finished their season with a three-match win streak.

They opened up the Big Sky tournament against Montana State (9–10, 6–4), to whom they lost 7–0 earlier in the year. That game was played without Dané Vorster, however, who, besides being one half of the team’s best doubles tandem, finished 8–8 overall in singles play—a mark that was good for second best on the team behind Govi, who finished 9–6 overall.

It was the Vorster-Govi tandem that led a comeback victory against the Bobcats’ Paulina Lopez and Jessica Brycki, pulling ahead after going down 5–2 early. The victory was also due in large part to strong performances from the bottom half of the lineup. “It’s been our M.O. this year, when some players lose, others step up,” said coach Jay Sterling.

Against the Grizzlies in the semifinals, the Vikings split their doubles matches at lines two and three. In the end, Vorster and Govi fell to Haley Driver and Precious Gbadamosi 9–7. It’s been hard this year for the Vikings to win matches when they lose in doubles, and the same was true in the semis, as the Grizzlies went on to win at three and six. The Vikings pulled within two at one point, but the Grizzlies were too much.

The season, despite its abrupt ending, was historic: The Vikings set a record for overall win percentage, conference win percentage, and total Big Sky wins (6). Govi broke the all-time record for singles wins in school history. She and Vorster also set the record for doubles. Senior Marina Todd finishes her career as the leader in all-time No. 2 singles wins.

At the beginning of the year, Todd told The Vanguard that she “[wanted] to end with a bang. I don’t want to have any regrets, or look back and think I could’ve worked harder.”

As I see it, mission accomplished.