By Blake Moore
MASON — The Ohio Northern women's tennis team blanked nonconference foe Franciscan 9-0 Friday evening, kicking off the OAC Tennis Fest in winning fashion at the Lindner Tennis Center in Mason.
With the victory, the Polar Bears improve to 14-4 overall in the 2018-19 regular season. The Barons, who have already qualified for the NCAA Division III Tournament after being crowned the Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference in October, fall to 16-5 overall with the loss.
All six players competing in Friday evening's match were double-winners in the nonconference affair.
The Polar Bears jumped out to an early 3-0 advantage after sweeping all three matches in doubles action. Junior Kaleigh Cummins (Springfield/Northeastern) and freshman Olivia Schrager (Dayton/Miami Valley) claimed an 8-6 decision at No. 1 doubles; senior Ashley Ochsenhirt (Birmingham, Ala./Briarwood Christian) and junior Mackenzie Wills (Ada) won 8-2 in the No. 2 slot; and junior Katie Curry (Oxford/Talawanda) and freshman Abigail Staskiewicz (Mars, Pa./Oakland Catholic) blanked their opponents 8-0 on the No. 3 court.
Ohio Northern went on to claim all six singles matches in straight sets.
Schrager kicked off the singles victories with a 6-1, 6-3 triumph on the No. 2 court, and Wills clinched the match with a 6-2, 6-3 decision in the No. 4 singles slot.
In addition, Ochsenhirt won 6-2, 6-4 in the top singles slot; Cummins claimed a 6-4, 6-2 victory at No. 3 singles; Curry rolled to a 6-1, 6-2 triumph on the No. 5 court; and Staskiewicz dropped just two games on her way to a 6-1, 6-1 victory at No. 6 singles.
Ohio Northern will conclude their weekend at the OAC Tennis Fest tomorrow with three scheduled matches. The Polar Bears will face off against Muskingum, Marietta, and Earlham (Ind.) at 9 a.m., 11 a.m., and 3 p.m., respectively, at the Lindner Tennis Center in Mason.