(Tucson, Ariz.) - Waubonsee Community College's women's tennis squad recently competed at the 2017 NJCAA Division I National Championship Tournament. The Chiefs placed 24th in the nation at the Reffkin Tennis Center in Tucson, Ariz, tallying three team points. Coach Jennifer McMullen's team won the Region IV Tournament back in November to qualify for nationals. Earlier in the fall Waubonsee captured the Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference title for the 17th time overall since the inaugural conference tennis season in 1976.
In Tucson the Chiefs' number two doubles team of sophomores Courtney Decker and Madison Ahlberg went 2-2 during the tournament. The duo fell in their opening match in straight sets to Mesa (AZ.) Community College's Yolena Carlon and Julia Ortiz, the sixth ranked doubles team in the country. Decker and Ahlberg bounced back to defeat the College of Dupage's doubles team 8-1, then hung on for a 9-7 victory over the hometown pairing of Lien Nguyen and Ashley Ochoa from Pima (AZ.) Community College. The Chiefs' duo was then knocked out 8-2 by Taylor Miller and Rachel Sollie from Meridian (MS.) Community College, the eventual consolation champions.
Individually, Ahlberg, a graduate of Yorkville High School, went 1-2 at number three singles. She fell 6-3, 6-2 to Eastern Arizona's Jennifer Milne in her first match. Ahlberg then beat Jacksonville (TX.) College's Allison Singleton 8-3, before bowing out with a loss to Pima's Nguyen.
Maddy Deufel also went 1-2 at number four singles for Waubonsee. The sophomore from Rosary High School lost her opening match to Collin (TX.) College's Hannah Rey. Deufel then knocked off DuPage's Jenelle Stolarczuk 8-1 before being eliminated by Nikita Hill from North Central Texas College.
Decker, along with Alexis Blackmon and Meredith Nelson all competed in singles play. Decker, an Aurora Central graduate, fell 6-4, 6-4 to Pima's Emma Oropeza before being ousted by Broward (FL.) County's Konomi Shida in number one singles action. Blackmon, from Oswego East High School, was downed by Central Alabama's Margaret Blackwell and Lewis & Clark's Marta Garcia in number two singles play. Nelson, an Aurora West alumnus, dropped her number five singles matches to Central Alabama's Abby Hines and Mississippi Gulf Coast's Jenna Lyons. Deufel and Blackmon also teamed up at number one singles, falling to Snead (AL.) State's Katy Bole and Alesha Triplett, and Jones County (MS.) Junior College's tandem of Natastasia Bukhanova and Beth Owen.