Freshman Hayley Haakenstad was the sole Husker to claim two wins Sunday against the Illinois State Redbirds. The wins helped advance the undefeated Huskers to 14-0 on the season.
Photo by Adam Warner/Nebraska Communications

No. 39 Nebraska Topples Redbirds, 4-0

By NU Athletic Communications

Lincoln - The No. 39 Nebraska women's tennis team pushed to a 4-0 victory over the Illinois State Redbirds on Sunday at the Dillon Tennis Center to advance its overall undefeated record on the season, 14-0. 

Doubles action kicked off Sunday tennis action at 11 a.m. with the Big Red taking the lead early on. Quickly taking the first doubles match, freshman duo Claire Reifeis and Hayley Haakenstad rocketed to a 6-1 win over Valerija Gercar and Andrea Beneroso of Illinois State. The win at No. 3 doubles advanced the pair to six wins on the season. 

Also earning a win for the Huskers was senior Mary Hanna and her partner Paula Del Cueto Castillo. The duo pulled a well-played 6-3 win at the No. 1 doubles position over Marcia Tere-Apisah and Jelena Karla Vujicic with the Redbirds, securing the doubles point for Nebraska and putting the team up 1-0 entering singles competition. 

After a slight singles lineup change, the Big Red once again battled into an early lead against Illinois State. 

In just her third appearance of the spring, freshman M'Balia Bangoura earned a quick 6-3, 6-1 victory over Andrea Beneroso of the Redbirds to finish first for the Huskers and bring the team score up to 2-0. Bangoura is now 3-0 all-time for the season. 

Next up to secure a win for the No. 39 Nebraska women's tennis team was Katerina Matysova. Matysova, originally down by two set points at the beginning of her match, fought back in a spectacular fashion to claim 12 straight set points and tackle the Redbirds' Jana Kustkova, 6-2, 6-0. This win at the No.3 singles position advanced the Big Red farther to lead the match 3-0. 

Last to claim a victory for the Huskers, Haakenstad earned her second win of the day with a victory over Gabriela Sprague at No. 5 singles. The freshman from Chanhassen, Minn. punched an easy 6-1, 6-2 victory over her Redbirds opponent to help bring the Nebraska women's tennis team to four points on the day, ending the match 4-0.

The Huskers finished the weekend with two 4-0 sweeps, one of and one of Illinois State, to continue unbeaten (14-0, 1-0 Big Ten) heading into their second Big Ten match of the season. Nebraska will continue to defend its undefeated streak as it welcomes the Purdue Boilmakers to the Sid and Hazel Dillon Tennis Center next weekend, on Saturday, March 11, at 11 a.m. Admission to all home matches is free and fans who can't make it out to the action can follow the Huskers on Twitter, @HuskersWTennis, or by catching match recaps on 


1. Vasanti Shinde (NEB) vs. Marcia Tere-Apisah (ILLST) 6-4, 1-5, unfinished
2. Jeannie Lozowski (NEB) vs. Jelena Karla Vujicic (ILLST) 6-6, unfinished
3. Katerina Matysova (NEB) def. Jana Kustkova (ILLST) 6-2, 6-0
4. Lisa Andersson (NEB) vs. Valerija Gercar (ILLST) 6-0, 5-1, unfinished
5. Hayley Haakenstad (NEB) def. Gabriela Sprague (ILLST) 6-1, 6-2
6. M' Balia Bangoura (NEB) def. Andrea Beneroso (ILLST) 6-3, 6-1

1. Mary Hanna/P.Del Cueto Castillo (NEB) def. Marcia Tere-Apisah/Jelena Karla Vujicic (ILLST) 6-3
2. Lisa Andersson/Vasanti Shinde (NEB) vs. Jana Kustkova/Gabriela Sprague (ILLST) 5-4, unfinished
3. Claire Reifeis/Hayley Haakenstad (NEB) def. Valerija Gercar/Andrea Beneroso (ILLST) 6-1


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