NYIT women's tennis' 31-match ECC win streak halted vs. UDC

Freshman Kaitlyn Byrnes played the deciding match on Friday at sixth singles.
Freshman Kaitlyn Byrnes played the deciding match on Friday at sixth singles.

OLD WESTBURY, N.Y. — The five-time defending East Coast Conference champion women's tennis team stumbled in its league opener Friday.

In a meeting that came down to a third set at sixth singles, District of Columbia freshman Florence Clerx defeated NYIT freshman Kaitlyn Byrnes to secure a 5-4 win for the Firebirds.

The defeat snapped NYIT's 31-match ECC winning streak. The Bears' last loss had come to Queens on Sept. 18, 2012.

Byrnes had dropped the first set, 6-2, but rallied to win the second set, 6-4. With all the other players congregating near the court and cheering on their teams, Clerx then won the third set, 6-3, to give UDC the win.

After dropping two of three doubles matches, NYIT had stormed back in early singles action. Alessia Rossetti defeated Dominika Hadnadova at first singles, 6-0, 6-0. At second singles, Lena Dimmer won, 6-1, 6-1 over Paula Avellan. And Ivana Andric defeated Anastasiia Danylova at third singles, 6-1, 6-0. However, Antonella Lopez at fourth singles and Rosa LaCorte at fifth singles stumbled in addition to Byrnes' defeat.

NYIT (1-1, 0-1 ECC) had opened its season Tuesday with an 8-1 win at Wilmington (Del.).