(Editor’s Note: Montana State sports information release)
BOZEMAN — Montana State senior Angelina Philippova put an exclamation point on her Senior Day experience posting a come-from-behind 3-6, 6-4, 6-1 win over Northern Colorado’s Triste Bryant-Otake at No. 2 singles to guide MSU to a 5-2 victory over the Bears on Sunday afternoon in the Bobcat-Anderson Tennis Center.
Montana State (714, 4-7) captured the opening doubles point with wins at the Nos. 1 and 2 spot. Philippova combined with freshman Annie Walker at No. 2 doubles and the duo cruised to a 6-1 decision.
“I think we had a couple of situations where the emotions of the day were so high that things started getting away from us in the beginning,” said MSU head coach Jon Reeves. “Angie did a nice job getting it under control and then took care of things pretty well.”
Philippova, a product of Astrakhan, Russia, completed her career with 89 overall victories, including 47 in singles action.
“In terms of knowing what you’re going to get every day, Angie’s as consistent as anyone we’ve had,” Reeves said. “The variance in her day-to-day was very little. She worked every day on getting better and over the course of time she started out playing at Nos. 4 and 5, and this year she moved up the ladder and even played at No. 1 for us. She’s been an outstanding example for our younger kids both on the court and off.”
Sophomore Laura Mary gave the Bobcats a 2-0 advantage opening singles action with a 6-2, 6-0 win over Rafa Mora at the top spot. Northern Colorado (5-13, 1-9) got on the board with a straight set win at No. 4 singles, before Philippova’s victory gave MSU a 3-1 cushion.
Northern Colorado pulled to within 3-2 with a win at No. 5 singles, before Walker clinched the match for the Bobcats with a 6-3, 6-7(2), 6-4 decision over Madeline Doherty at the No. 3 spot. Freshman Enni Zander claimed MSU’s final point with a convincing 6-1, 6-2 victory at No. 6 singles.
“I’m really proud of the girls and it was a great way to end the season,” Reeves said.
The Bobcats have been eliminated from the six-team Big Sky Conference Tournament field. MSU will return seven players next season, losing only Philippova to graduation.
“This young team has grown a ton,” Reeves said. “Their games have gotten better. Now, we just need to get in some individual work before they head home for three months.”
Montana State 5, Northern Colorado 2
1. MARY, Laura (MSU) def. Mora, Rafa (NC) 6-2, 6-0
2. PHILIPPOVA, Angelina (MSU) def. Bryant-Otake, Triste (NC) 3-6, 6-4, 6-1
3. WALKER, Annie (MSU) def. Doherty, Madeline (NC) 6-3, 6-7 (2-7), 6-4
4. Chhabra, Sarina (NC) def. VINK, Linda (MSU) 6-4, 7-5
5. Koitabashi, Mana (NC) def. CHEVERIE, Sarah (MSU) 6-2, 6-3
6. ZANDER, Enni (MSU) def. Blanchard, Carrigan (NC) 6-1, 6-2
1. MARY, Laura/VINK, Linda (MSU) def. Bryant-Otake, Triste/Battersby, Anna (NC) 6-2
2. PHILIPPOVA, Angelina/WALKER, Annie (MSU) def. Mora, Rafa/Doherty, Madeline (NC) 6-1
3. CHEVERIE, Sarah/ZANDER, Enni (MSU) vs. Blanchard, Carrigan/Chhabra, Sarina (NC) 2-5, unfinished
Northern Colorado 5-13, 1-9
Montana State 7-14, 4-7
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1); Singles (1,4,2,5,3,6)