CHAMPS! B-CU Takes HBCU Nationals Title
ATLANTA - Shereen Peterson-Paul, Chinatsu Kajiwara and Gaby Chinchilla won flight championships Saturday at the HBCU National Tennis Championship, but Bethune-Cookman's team title was the result of three days of team contribution.
The Lady Wildcats claimed the tournament title over Delaware State and Florida A&M at the Clayton County Tennis Center.
Kajiwara won the "A" flight with a 6-1,6-4 victory over Delaware State's Ksenia Kozlova then combined with Gaby Chinchilla for a 8-2 victory over Prairie View's Brittany Harrell/Lerato Ndlovu in the "A" Doubles.
Peterson-Paul took the "B" singles flight after Southern's Lois Alexis retired in the third set with an injury with Peterson-Paul leading 6-7, 6-3, 5-4.
"It was a unified team effort," said B-CU Head Coach Tim Pleasant. "We played with a lot of confidence. I expected Shareen and Chinatsu to do well, but Ancia and Laura added their contribution."
Peterson-Paul's victory was worth the wait. Last year, she was eliminated in the semifinals by a teammate, even though she did produce a doubles title in 2011.
"Shereen was unbelievable this weekend," Pleasant said. "When she played the girl from Southern, she must have had 40 winners. I've never seen her play like that."
Kajiwara lost just six games in her four matches .
"She just steamrolled everyone," Pleasant said. "She has such variety in her game."
Pleasant credited Chinchilla for "finding her serve" as the tournament progressed.
photos compiled by Emil Vassilev