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APSU Women’s Tennis takes down Eastern Illinois, 6-1

APSU Women's TennisClarksville, TN – Victory was never in doubt, as the Austin Peay State University (APSU) women’s tennis team won its fifth-straight doubles point of the spring and proceeded to win five singles matches in its 6-1 victory against Eastern Illinois, Saturday, at the Governors Tennis Courts.

Denise Torrealba and Honoka Nakanishi continued to shine from the APSU Govs’ top doubles line, as the duo defeated Eastern Illinois’ Rachel Papavasilopoulos and Addison Brown, 6-1. Torrealba and Nakanishi have won five-straight matches from the No. 1 position and lead all APSU tandems with seven wins.

Austin Peay (6-5, 2-0 OVC) secured the match’s first point after Danielle Morris and Jana Leder won their third match to remain perfect in as many outings. The duo defeated EIU’s Christine Gouws, 6-2, from the No. 2 line.
With the doubles point already in hand, Martina Paladini-Jennings and Yu-Hua Cheng’s match from the No. 3 position went unfinished while the duo led, 5-2. 
The APSU Govs quickly secured the win, winning the first three singles matches on the court.
Leder picked up the Govs’ first singles point, defeating Bukraba-Ulanova in a pair of convincing, 6-1, 6-2, sets to earn her fifth win of the season.

As she has done all season long, Paladini-Jennings continued to shine for APSU in singles play. The London, England native earned her team-best eighth win of the season, including her sixth-straight. Seven of Paladini-Jennings’ wins this season have come in straight sets.

Continuing her strong play from the Govs’ top singles position, Torrealba defeated Papavasilopoulos – the 2019 OVC Player of the Year and a two-time First Team All-OVC selection – in three sets for her seventh win of the spring and fifth from the No. 1 position. 

With the win already in hand following Torrealba’s victory, Morris won her fourth singles match in as many opportunities this spring. Including the fall, Morris has won nine of 10 singles matches and 15 of her last 16 since April 3, 2021.

Senior Aleks Topalovic rallied to win a marathon set against EIU’s Brown. After dropping the first set, 6-4, Topalovic answered by winning the second set in a 7-4 tiebreaker and come away with a narrow, 10-8, win in the 10-point tiebreaker. 

APSU suffered their lone loss of the afternoon when EIU’s Lauren Ellis defeated Nakanishi on the No. 6 singles court. 

After a slow start to the season, Austin Peay State University has rallied to win six straight. The win also marked the Govs’ fifth straight against the Panthers since 2017.

Results vs. Eastern Illinois


  1. Denise Torrealba / Honoka Nakanishi (APSU) def. Rachel Papavasilopoulos / Addison Brown (EIU), 6-1
  2. Jana Leder / Danielle Morris (APSU) def. Christine Gouws / Elizaveta Bukraba-Ulanova (EIU), 6-2
  3. Martina Paladini-Jennings / Yu-Hua Cheng (APSU) vs. Brittany Steven / Lauren Ellis (EIU), Unfinished at 5-2

Order of Finish: 1, 2*


  1. Denise Torrealba (APSU) def. Rachel Papavasilopoulos. (EIU-W) 7-5, 3-6, 6-2
  2. Jana Leder (APSU) def. Elizaveta Bukraba-Ulanova (EIU), 7-5, 3-6, 6-2
  3. Martina Paladini-Jennings (APSU) def. Christine Gouws (EIU), 6-4, 6-4
  4. Aleks Topalovic (APSU) def. Addison Brown (EIU), 4-6, 7-6 (7-4), 10-8
  5. Danielle Morris (APSU) def. Brittany Steven (EIU), 6-3, 1-0, ret.
  6. Lauren Ellis (EIU) def. Honoka Nakanishi (APSU), 6-4, 6-2

Order of Finish: 2, 3, 1*, 5, 4, 6

Coach’s Corner

Austin Peay State University head coach, Ross Brown

On the win and looking ahead to SIUE… “It was a good win for us today. Belmont is a strong team, so for us to get through them last week and pick up a good win today against Eastern Illinois is big. SIUE has been playing extremely well this season. They swept Murray State today so tomorrow’s match is extremely important to us. I am thankful to get through today. We are just so glad to have Danielle Morris back and could see her continuing to move up in the lineup. 

On the team’s doubles play… “I am pleased with our doubles play…. Our doubles play has improved a lot this year. We have had aggressive positioning out on the court. We are serving better, returning better, and overall, just playing better. All of that has made a difference out there. 

Follow the APSU Govs

For news and updates ahead of the Governors’ match against SIUE, follow the women’s tennis team on Twitter (@GovsWTN), Instagram (@GovsTennis) and Facebook (Austin Peay Tennis).

Next Up For APSU Women’s Tennis

The Austin Peay State University women’s tennis team looks to keep their winning streak alive when they host SIU Edwardsville for a Sunday 11:00am match at the Governors Tennis Courts. 

The Cougars (14-2, 2-1), are coming off a 7-0 road victory against Murray State, Saturday.


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