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Pirates ‘Strike’ back against Fairleigh Dickinson

After a loss on Friday at the hands of NJIT, the Seton Hall women’s tennis team were able to bounce back on Saturday and secure a 6-1 victory over Fairleigh Dickinson to finish the weekend. The Pirates came out swinging in the Centercourt in Florham Park, N.J., winning two doubles events, before Luize Strike set the tone for singles with a dominant straight-sets win. The senior Strike pulled off a 6-0, 6-0 victory in the No. 1 singles spot, giving the Pirates the two-score lead that they failed to get after earning the doubles point against NJIT. [caption id="attachment_21749" align="aligncenter" width="838"] Photo via SHU Athletics[/caption] Taal, Fajnorova and Matson all dropped their first sets, 6-4, but all came charging back to win in the No. 2, 3 and 5 singles positions. Taal won her match 4-6, 7-5, 6-4, while Fajnorova won her match 4-6, 6-2, 6-2. Matson, with the win already intact, won her singles match, 4-6, 6-1, 6-2. Krista Cerpina was the only Pirate who fell in her respective singles match, as the Knights Liza Rachenko earned the victory after Cerpina retired with the second set dead-locked at 3-3. The sophomore Cerpina had dropped the first set, 6-0. Fairleigh Dickinson later forfeited in the last singles event, which gave Katie Kim an automatic victory. Overall the Pirates dominated the match from beginning to end, securing the much-needed victory. Head Coach Riza Zalameda expressed after the win how impressed she was with her team. “Today shoes how much character this team has,” Zalameda said. "To bounce back after a heartbreaking loss on Friday and play as composed and confidently as they did in the win Saturday makes me extremely proud of them." Zalameda also spoke about Melody Taal, who had a spectacular performance on Sunday, coming up with two key victories to help end the Pirates three-game losing skid. “Taal has been a leader beyond her years and has poise under any circumstance which was evident in the way she played today.” The Pirates are hoping to use the win as a springboard for their matches next weekend against Cornell on Saturday, Feb. 24 and Binghamton on Feb. 25 in Ithaca, N.Y. Eli Jean-Pierre can be reached at


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