Simms, Warriors fall in NAIA first round

It was a historic season for Bahamian Abigail Simms and her team, the number 21 ranked Indiana Tech Warriors, but it came to a halt on Wednesday when they lost to the number 16 ranked University of the Cumberlands Patriots in the first round of the NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) Women’s Tennis Championships.

The Warriors fell 4-2 to the Patriots at the Mobile Tennis Center in Mobile, Alabama.

After a 1-1 deadlock after the number one and number two doubles matches, it was up to the Grand Bahamian and her doubles partner Ana Gomez to give the Warriors the key doubles point. They were up against Laura Marie and Tessa Gray. In the end, Simms and Gomez were unable to pull off the victory, falling 6-2 to their opponents. The Patriots took the doubles point to go into the singles competition up 1-0.

In singles play, the sophomore was brilliant playing in the number two singles position. She went up against Mikela Fros. Simms won the first set emphatically, 6-0. In the second set, the Bahamian kept the pressure on, winning 6-2. That match gave the Warriors their first point in the tournament.

This was the first time in program history that the Warriors were playing in the NAIA National Championship. With that win, Simms gave them their first ever point in that tournament.

Before the NAIA Championship, they sported a win/loss record of 17-2 that included a 5-0 record in conference play. They were 15-1 at home, at the Swinney Tennis Center in Fort Wayne, Indiana, and ended the season as winners of six straight duels.

Heading into the Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference (WHAC) Women Tennis Championships, the Warriors were the number one seed. They showed why they were the top seed, defeating the University of Northwestern Ohio Racers 4-2 in the championship that earned them their first WHAC title in program history.

Simms and doubles partner Isidora Hrnjak earned WHAC All-Conference doubles honors, finishing the season 6-3. The Grand Bahamian was also recognized for her play, making the All-Conference First Team.

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Simba French

Simba joined The Nassau Guardian in 2012 as a technical producer for Guardian Radio 96.9 FM. He joined the Editorial Department as a sports reporter in 2018. Simba has covered a wide range of sports stories, including the 2018 CARIFTA in Nassau, Bahamas. Education: College of the Bahamas, BA Media Journalism

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