BETHANY BEACH, Del. – The University of Delaware women’s tennis team opened the 2014 spring schedule Sunday afternoon with a 5-2 loss to Howard University at the Sea Colony Resort.

Olivia Heim (Gibsonia, Pa.) led the way for the Blue Hens (0-1) with two wins.  The senior paired up for the first time ever with sophomore Nataliya Naumova (Moscow, Russia) and came away with an 8-2 victory in No. 2 doubles against Umarah Mughnee and Audra Bell.

Heim followed a winning doubles performance with a 6-5 (2), 3-0 (ret.) win against Bell later in the afternoon.

Sophomore Carmen Lai (Shatin, Hong Kong) earned her 10th victory of the season with a 6-1, 6-2 win over Maame Osei in No. 3 singles action.

Head Coach Laura Travis – “We had a solid performance today against a tough Howard team.  This squad pushed us outside of our comfort zone in multiple ways and the response was positive.  This is something that will help us tremendously as the season continues.  We are very fortunate to have played at the Sea Colony Resort and want to thank everyone involved for a terrific day.”

      ·    Carmen Lai is the first player to reach 10 wins this season.
      ·    Lai has won two straight matches.
      ·    Olivia Heim moved into 15th place all-time with 54 career singles victories.  Liz Perlow (2003-07) is in 14th place with a career mark of 55-43.

      · Saturday, Feb. 1 – Delaware at Loyola – 6:30 p.m. – Green Spring Racquet Club (Sparks, Md.)
      · Sunday, Feb. 9 – Villanova at Delaware – 3 p.m. – DuPont Country Club (Wilmington, Del.)
      · Saturday, Feb. 22 – Quinnipiac at Delaware – 6:30 p.m. – Elkton Indoor Tennis Courts (Elkton, Md.)