LONG BEACH, Calif. - Long Beach State earned its second straight conference win with a 4-1 victory over CSUN on Saturday afternoon. LBSU improves to 2-1 on the season and 2-0 in Big West play, winning the first match of the weekend before hosting San Francisco tomorrow at 11 a.m. CSUN falls to 2-4 with the loss and 0-2 in Big West action.
“It was a nice win over a tough conference opponent today,” said LBSU head coach Jenny Hilt-Costello. “It’s good to get a couple wins in a row and now we need to keep that momentum going tomorrow.”
The Beach took the early lead with a hard-fought doubles point. LBSU’s top pair of Maeva Razakasoa and Julie Gerard took their match at 6-2, but when CSUN won the match at No. 3 it all came down to Laura Eales and Maren Helgo at No. 2. The 49er pair trailed 5-4, took a 6-5 lead, and then were forced to win the match in a tiebreak. LBSU served first and dominated the tiebreak, winning 7-1 to claim the match and the doubles point.
That carried over to singles where the Beach won five of the six opening sets. Unfortunately, two of the afternoon’s singles matches ended early due to injury. After Razakasoa won her first set at No. 1 singles, Kiryang Kim was unable to continue for CSUN, giving LBSU a 2-0 lead. Then Laura Eales withdrew for her match after winning the first set 6-1.
That made the score 2-1 in favor of the Beach, and wins from Lena Pacholski at No. 4 and Julie Gerard at No. 2 secured the win. Natalia Munoz and Maren Helgo saw their matches suspended before completion with each player winning their second set. Munoz had won the first and was on the verge of a potential victory when the 49ers clinched the win.
LBSU will end its brief homestand with an 11 a.m. contest vs. San Francisco tomorrow, then start a four-match road trip next Friday at San Diego State.
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