PERRYSBURG, Ohio -- Bowling Green opened Mid-American Conference play in thrilling fashion, rallying for a 4-3 win oagainst ver Western Michigan on Saturday afternoon.
With the win, the Falcons improve to 6-4 overall, while dropping the Broncos to 11-6 in dual-match play.
Senior Nikki Chiricosta broke a pair of school records in the win, while sophomore Katie Brozovich picked up the Falcons' final point with a marathon victory at the third singles flight.
Chiricosta and Brozovich each were double winners on Saturday, teaming up for a win at the second doubles flight, then winning their respective singles matches. The Falcons won at the top-three singles flights, with Chiricosta, fellow senior Emily Reuland and Brozovich picking up those victories.
In doubles play, the duo of Falcon freshmen Hannah Drayton and Harley Hutchison clinched the first point of the match by winning at the third flight.
Chiricosta is now the BGSU career record-holder in a pair of categories: singles wins and combined victories. Her doubles win was the 179th overall victory of her BG career, moving her past her sister on that list. Christine Chiricosta picked up 178 total victories as a Falcon from 2008-11.
Christine's victory total included 89 singles and 89 doubles wins at BG, and Nikki Chiricosta entered Saturday's match with those exact win totals. Her singles victory against Kathleen Hawkins at the top flight gave her sole possession of the school record on that list.
Brozovich's singles match, versus Meika Ashby, was a back-and-forth roller-coaster ride of emotions for all involved, with each player seemingly in control on several occasions. Ashby won the first three games en route to a 6-3 victory in the opening set, but Brozovich battled back to capture a 6-4 win in the second set.
The third set saw Ashby burst out to a 3-0 lead, only to have Brozovich wrest control by winning five consecutive games. Ashby, seemingly reeling, was anything but, as she proceeded to take nine-straight points.
After that ninth point gave Ashby a 5-love lead with the set tied at five games apiece, Brozovich came back to go ahead by a 40-30 score. Ashby won the next point, but Brozovich took the next two, and the Falcon sophomore had a 6-5 lead in the final set.
Brozovich burst out to a 40-love lead, and had match point on three occasions, but Ashby battled back to win the next five points, knotting the set at 6-6 and forcing a tiebreaker.
Brozovich spotted Ashby the first point of the 'breaker, then won the next four points before Ashby pulled out a miraculous shot to halt that run. Ashby took the next point to cut Brozovich's lead to 4-3. Brozovich took a two-point lead, saw Ashby make it a 5-4 score, then won two consecutive points to take the match and give BGSU the overall victory.