LEWISBURG, Pa. – In spite of the chilly temperatures outside, competition in the 2014 spring tennis season is heating up, and the Bucknell women’s tennis team will take to the courts on Saturday afternoon, looking for its first win of the new campaign. The Bison will play host to the St. Francis (Pa.) Red Flash at the West Branch Tennis Club in Williamsport, Pa., and action is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m.

Bucknell, which was picked fourth in the Patriot League women’s tennis pre-season poll, opened up its 2014 spring season on Saturday, Jan. 18, falling 6-1 to No. 49 Penn State at the Penn State Indoor Tennis Center. Freshman Melissa Parks earned the squad’s only point of the afternoon, playing to a straight-set victory at No. 6 singles, and the Bison fell to 0-1 in the young season. St. Francis has already seen action on three occasions and has played to a 2-1 record. The Red Flash were defeated by Navy (7-0) in their season opener, and then went on to earn wins over George Mason (5-1) and St. Bonaventure (5-2).   

The Bison are 12-0 all-time against the Red Flash, most recently defeating them 5-2 in their season opener last year. Bucknell took the doubles point and four of the six singles matches last February, kicking things off with wins at second and third doubles. Junior Lydia Colvin and sophomore Maria Cioffi teamed up for the 8-3 victory over Shivani Patel and Alex Sachs, while sophomore Stephanie Pino and her partner combined for an 8-4 decision over Camila Diaz and Jenifer Yealy.

Cioffi defeated Patel a second time in the match, earning a 6-4, 6-2 win at No. 2 singles, and Colvin also earned her second win of the day in singles play, triumphing 6-0, 6-2 over Lucy Jasso at the No. 3 spot. Junior Christie Schneider also earned a victory in last year’s match, defeating Jenifer Yealy 6-0, 6-0 at No. 6 singles.  

After competing this weekend, the women’s team will take another lengthy hiatus to focus on training, returning to action on Friday, Feb. 28 for a 2 p.m. match at Coppin State.