INDIANAPOLIS, Ind., April 12 - Southern Utah's women's tennis team moved one step closer to locking up a Summit League tournament bid Thursday when the Thunderbirds notched a 6-1 win over Oakland University in a match played at Indianapolis North Central High School.

The short-handed Thunderbirds - who have played every match this season with just five players - claimed victories in every contested match, losing only at third doubles and sixth singles, where they failed to field competitors.

SUU claimed the doubles point as Alex Ivanova and Olia Tatarchenko got past Grace Keating and Demi Gerogakopoulos 8-1 at the first position while Ksusha Johnson and Lisa Pleskan were 8-6 winners over Brittany Baxter and Caitlin Young at No. 2.

Oakland had a point at the unopposed sixth singles spot but Johnson gave the Thunderbirds a 2-1 lead with a 6-0, 6-2 win over Young at No. 1 singles. Afton Staheli got SUU's second singles point with a 6-0, 6-1 win over Caryn Kimmel at No. 5, then Tatarchenko followed with a 6-0, 6-0 win over Georgakopoulos at No. 3 to clinch the win for the Thunderbirds.

Ivanova made it 5-1 with a 6-2, 6-2 win over Keating at No. 2 and Pleskan finished off the sweep with a 6-1, 6-2 victory over Baxter at No. 4.

SUU  faces Western Illinois tomorrow, then meets Oral Roberts and South Dakota State on Saturday. The Thunderbirds clinch a tournament berth with either two more wins or one win and a loss by SDSU.

Tennis Match Results
Oakland vs Southern Utah
Apr 12, 2012 at Indianapolis, Ind.
(North Central High School)

Southern Utah 6, Oakland 1

Singles competition

1. Ksusha Johnson (SUU) def. Caitlin Young (OAKLAND) 6-0, 6-2
2. Alex Ivanova (SUU) def. Grace Keating (OAKLAND) 6-2, 6-2
3. Olia Tatarchenko (SUU) def. Demi Georgakopoulos (OAKLAND) 6-0, 6-0
4. Lisa Pleskan (SUU) def. Brittany Baxter (OAKLAND) 6-1, 6-2
5. Afton Staheli (SUU) def. Caryn Kimmel (OAKLAND) 6-0, 6-1
6. Abbey Bates (OAKLAND) def. No player (SUU), by default

 Doubles competition

1. Alex Ivanova/Olia Tatarchenko (SUU) def. Grace Keating/Demi Georgakopoulos (OAKLAND) 8-1
2. Lisa Pleskan/Ksusha Johnson (SUU) def. Brittany Baxter/Caitlin Young (OAKLAND) 8-6
3. Abbey Bates/Caryn Kimmel (OAKLAND) def. No player/No player (SUU), by default

Match Notes:
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (6,1,5,3,2,4)

-- SUU --