Shoulder pain doesn’t keep Mesa’s Sargent on sideline

Cyndle Curfman keeps her eye on the ball as she returns a shot Friday in her 6-2, 6-1 victory at No. 5 singles in Mesa State’s 8-1 victory over Montana State-Billings at the Elliott Tennis Center.

Victoria Sargent’s shoulder has bothered her for more than a year now, but it wasn’t until recently doctors discovered the problem.

The Mesa State College senior tennis player has multidirectional instability in her right shoulder and it causes more than pain. The loose joint in the shoulder socket pops out of place on occasion.

“It started dislocating this season for no reason,” Sargent said. “It pops out and I have to put it back in myself. It hurts, but I keep playing.”

The No. 2 singles player was able to play Friday without the shoulder popping out of place, defeating Rikki Peach of Montana State-Billings 6-2, 6-1 at the Elliott Tennis Center to seal Mavericks’ 8-1 RMAC victory. The Yellow Jackets defeated Mesa State 8-1 in the men’s dual.

“She’s thinking about getting a cortisone shot, but it’s totally up to her,” Mesa State coach Dan MacDonald said. “She’s having a great year, it’s unfortunate with the injury.”

The Mesa women (18-9) swept the three doubles matches. Kelleen Sera and Kaitlin Sera won their No. 1 and 3 singles matches in straight sets. Cyndle Curfman won 6-2, 6-1 at No. 5 singles and Skyler Nelson won 2-6, 6-2, (10-7) at No. 6.

“We have a strong senior, junior class (on the women’s team),” MacDonald said. “We’re playing better situational tennis, being offensive when we should be and being defensive when we should be. We’re just playing smart tennis.

“That’s the key to tennis a lot of times, you might not have the greatest strokes in the world, but playing the big points smarter.”

The women’s victory was key after the Mavericks dropped to sixth in the NCAA Central Region rankings this week.

“These matches are really important,” Sargent said. “If another team doesn’t have a win over one of the teams we beat, hopefully that can make a difference and help us move up.

“We’re not so much worried about regional rankings right now. Hopefully next week in RMAC we can prove we belong, which I’m sure we can do. I think we play better in tight situations.”

The young men’s team (9-14) is still learning how to play in tight matches. The No. 2 doubles team of Brason Hollabaugh and Joseph Aragon won 8-6 for the Mavs’ only win.

“The men’s team is young and it shows up in little things,” MacDonald said. “Bad decision making, trying to be offensive when you should be playing defense. We’re not playing the big points right.”

The Mesa men and women can possibly gain more ground in the regional rankings in duals against Colorado State University-Pueblo at 2:30 p.m. today at the Elliott Tennis Center.

The RMAC tournament is next weekend in Denver.

“The Northern Sun has already completed their regular season, so it is important for us to get some momentum going heading into the conference tournament,” MacDonald said. “The key to the team will be three doubles, five and six singles in my opinion.

“Last year’s men’s team made the Sweet 16 by everyone winning a point. I try to tell the women’s team the same thing. Everyone’s got to contribute.”


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