Manseri, Linarez make semifinals at national tournament

Manseri, Linarez make semifinals at national tournament

Two Eastern Florida State College women's tennis players advanced to the semifinals in the NJCAA Division I National Championship Tournament in Waco, Texas on Tuesday.

Sophomores Sarah Manseri and Dugleisy Linarez each won their singles matches in the morning session to punch tickets into the semifinals, marking the first time a women's tennis player from Eastern Florida State College has reached the semifinals in the national tournament.

Manseri battled ABAC's Vasavi Ganesan Shanthi for almost four hours, winning 4-6, 7-5, 6-3 in three sets to advance at No. 2 singles.

After dropping the first set 6-3, the Poulx, France native found herself tied 5-5 in the second set. After holding her serve, Manseri would get to deuce and finally get the break to send the match to the third set.

The two were tied 2-2, but Manseri dominated from there to post the 6-3 win and advance to the semifinals for the first time.

Manseri will play No. 1 seed Maria Genovese of Tyler Junior College who beat Seminole State College's Mariam Mujawimana 7-5, 6-0.

Linarez had an easier route to the semifinals as she dominated Iowa Central's Paulina Jankum, winning 6-0, 6-1 to advance to the semifinals. The transfer from ASA Miami is back in the semifinals for the second straight season.

The Barquisimeto, Venezuela native has won both of her matches in straight sets. Linarez will face No. 1 seed Kalani Soli of Tyler Junior College who defeated Seward Community College's Alena Macharova 6-2, 6-0.

Sophomore Jaime Duque has bounced back after losing her first-round match at No. 4 singles, beating Payton Cap 8-0 to reach the consolation final where she will play Jones County's Kaylee McLaurin.

Yuliana Monroy lost her quarterfinals match against ABAC's Celia Morel at No. 1 singles. Monroy started the match off well, winning the first set 6-4 but Morel came back to win the next two sets, 6-3, 6-0, ending the Region Sophomore of the Year's season.

Emma Othmer lost to No. 1 seed Mekelia Erspamer in the No. 6 singles quarterfinals, wrapping up a successful freshman season.

The afternoon was tough on the Titans as all three doubles teams fell in quarterfinal matches.

No. 1 doubles team of Monroy and Manseri battled for almost three hours against Seminole State College's Valentina Gonzalez and Mujawimana. Seminole took the first set 6-4, the Titans duo battled back from 5-6 to force a tiebreaker which they won 7-3 to force a third set.

The third set was tight throughout with the Titans getting a break to tie the match 5-5, but lost the next two to lose 7-5.

The No. 2 doubles team of Linarez and Shaeda Nickle also lost in three sets, winning the first set 7-5 but lost the next two 6-2, 6-2 to ABAC's Shanthi and Agustina Diaz.

The No. 3 doubles team of Duque and Othmer fell to Tyler Junior College's Oceane Garibal and Afrodite Tzanopoulous.