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Titans Finish Fourth At WIAC Championship

Samantha Koppa finished second at No. 2 singles and teamed with Kelley Hodyl for a second-place finish at No. 1 doubles during the WIAC Championship.
Samantha Koppa finished second at No. 2 singles and teamed with Kelley Hodyl for a second-place finish at No. 1 doubles during the WIAC Championship.

Samantha Koppa finished second at No. 2 singles and teamed with Kelley Hodyl for a second-place finish at No. 1 doubles to highlight UW-Oshkosh's list of performances at the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) Women's Tennis Championship (Presented by Culver's) held Saturday and Sunday (Oct. 26-27) at the Nielsen Tennis Stadium in Madison.

UW-Oshkosh totaled 38 points during the team portion of the championship to finish fourth in the league's overall standings with 12 points. The overall finish advanced the Titans to the WIAC Team Tournament that will be held next April at UW-Whitewater. The winner of that four-team event earns the WIAC's automatic berth into the 2020 NCAA Division III Championship.

UW-Whitewater went unbeaten during the league's regular-season dual meet competition and finished first at the WIAC Championship to win the conference's overall title for the 13th consecutive year and 20th time in school history.

The overall WIAC champion was determined by using a combination of the league's regular-season dual meet standings and the conference's championship finish. The regular-season dual meet rankings accounted for one-third of the criteria while the conference championship finish accounted for the remaining two-thirds.

UW-Whitewater captured first place at the WIAC Championship with 54 points while UW-Eau Claire finished second with 52, UW-La Crosse third with 50, UW-Stevens Point fifth with 21, UW-Stout sixth with 19 and UW-River Falls seventh with 18.

In WIAC dual matches, UW-Whitewater won all six league contests for seven points. UW-Eau Claire finished second with a 5-1 record (6 points) while UW-La Crosse placed third at 4-2 (5 points), UW-Oshkosh fourth at 3-3 (4 points), UW-River Falls fifth at 2-4 (3 points), UW-Stevens Point sixth at 1-5 (2 points) and UW-Stout seventh at 0-6 (1 point).

UW-Whitewater won the overall WIAC title with 21 points while UW-Eau Claire finished second with 18, UW-La Crosse third with 15, UW-Stevens Point fifth with eight and both UW-River Falls and UW-Stout sixth with five.

UW-Whitewater, UW-La Crosse, UW-Eau Claire also advanced with UW-Oshkosh to next spring's WIAC Team Tournament. The Titans will play UW-Whitewater in their semifinal round match.

Koppa finished second at No. 2 singles during the championship with a 2-1 record. The second-seeded Koppa defeated seventh-seeded Jenna Koepp of UW-Stevens Point, 6-1, 6-0, and third-seeded Lauren Couves of UW-Stout, 6-3, 6-2, before losing her title match by a 6-4, 6-1 result to fourth-seeded Maura Andersen of UW-La Crosse.

Koppa, who previously placed fourth at No. 3 singles (2018), No. 4 singles (2017) and No. 5 singles (2016) during her three previous WIAC Championship appearances, became the first UW-Oshkosh player to advance to an individual final since Emily Bostwick placed second at No. 1 singles in 2011.

In doubles play, Koppa and Hodyl worked together for a second-place finish in the first flight. The fourth-seeded Titan duo outscored fourth-seeded Couves and Elizabeth Wentzel of UW-Stout, 8-6, and top-seeded Paige Nierman and Sabrina Palavra of UW-Whitewater, 8-6, before losing their title contest by an 8-2 verdict to third-seeded Emily Cooper and Natalie Wijesinghe of UW-Eau Claire. Koppa and Hodyl became the first UW-Oshkosh tandem to play for the No. 1 doubles title since Debra Ashenbrenner and Mercedes Blanch finished second in 2002.

UW-Oshkosh also had Alyssa Leffler at No. 1 singles, Hodyl at No. 3 singles, Michelle Spicer at No. 4 singles and Lesley Kutnink at No. 5 singles all finish fourth with 1-2 records. Each Titan entered the championship as the fourth seed in their respective flight.

Leffler defeated Isabella Kranz of UW-River Falls, 6-0, 6-2, before losing a 6-1, 6-4 decision to UW-Eau Claire's Wijesinghe, 6-1, 6-4. Leffler lost her third-place match by a 6-1, 7-5 result to UW-Whitewater's Nierman.

Hodyl ousted Marissa Delaney of UW-Stevens Point, 6-0, 6-0, before losing a 7-5, 6-2 outcome to UW-Whitewater's Palavra. Hodyl lost her third-place contest by a 3-6, 6-1 (10-7) ruling to UW-Eau Claire's Lindsey Henderson.

Spicer, who finished third at No. 5 singles a year ago, beat Gabby Potthoff of UW-River Falls, 6-4, 6-1, before losing a 6-0, 6-4 result to UW-Whitewater's Jessica Minkov. Spicer lost her third-place match by a 6-0, 7-5 decision to UW-La Crosse's Shira Busch.

Kutnink defeated Abbie Reed of UW-River Falls, 6-1, 6-2, before dropping a 6-2, 6-0 contest to UW-Whitewater's Madeline Slicker. Kutnink lost her third-place match by a 6-1, 4-6 (10-7) result to UW-La Crosse's Kaitlyn Kalinka.

The Titans also received a fifth-place finish from Taylor Johnson at No. 6 singles (2-1 record).

UW-Oshkosh's two other outcomes in doubles play were a fourth-place finish by Leffler and Spicer in the second flight (1-2 record) and a fifth-place finish by Johnson and Kutnink in the third (1-1 record). 

Leffler and Spicer defeated Kailey Courteau and Karyn Duddeck of UW-River Falls, 8-0, before losing an 8-6 result to Molly Rueth and Megan Setter of UW-Whitewater. Leffler and Spicer lost their third-place match by an 8-7 (3) score to Andersen and Kalinka from UW-La Crosse.

UW-Eau Claire captured two of the WIAC's three postseason awards as Wijesinghe was named Player of the Year and Tom Gillman Coach of the Year. UW-La Crosse's Kellie Hierl was selected as the league's Newcomer of the Year.

2019 WIAC Women's Tennis Championship Website