MORAGA, Calif. -- After being a part of so much success in four years at Saint Mary's, it just wouldn't have been right for Gaels senior Catherine Isip to walk away from Korth Tennis Complex on Sunday with a loss.
Audrey Leitz and the rest of the Gaels made sure that wasn't an issue.
A close match with No. 71-ranked Loyola Marymount came down to No. 6 singles and Leitz came through in a big way, closing out a 4-3 Saint Mary's win with a three-set victory on Senior Day in Moraga.
With the win, No. 42 Saint Mary's finishes the regular season 12-8 overall and 7-1 in West Coast Conference play. Loyola Marymount falls to 10-9 overall and 2-4 in conference.
Isip played a big role in Sunday's victory, as she has so many times as a Gael.
Saint Mary's dropped the doubles point to begin the match, with Isip and Leitz teaming at No. 2 for the Gaels' lone win.
Singles would be where Saint Mary's made its mark.
Isip was next to finish, and the senior from Anaheim, Calif. walked off court two a winner with a 7-6, 6-2 win over Tory Parravi.
Loyola Marymount bounced back to win at No. 3 and No. 5, tying the match at 3 points apiece.
That left Leitz and Reka Rohonyi to decide things on court six, and for the second match in a row, the junior from Nimes, France would send the Gaels to a victory. She dropped the first set 4-6, then rebounded to win 6-2, 6-3 and finish the 2013 regular season on a high note.
"I'm pleased we pulled it out today. I think we willed a win out of today," Saint Mary's coach Lisa Alipaz said. "They were a really good team. I think we were prepared to play a tough team and it took everything we had."
The last-match heroics provided an especially appropriate backdrop for Isip to close her home career. Already a three-time All-WCC first team selection and the 2010 WCC Freshman of the Year, Isip will leave Saint Mary's as unquestionably one of the program's most accomplished players.
"She's a quiet leader. She works hard every day. She leads by example," Alipaz said. "I've known few better competitors than her. That's always impressed me about her. No matter what the situation, what the score is or who the opponent is, she finds a way to rise to the occasion at the right times."
Where Isip has been particularly good has been in doubles, teaming with a host of different Gaels to much success. This season alone, she's been ranked nationally with Elizabeth Searl and is currently riding a six match winning streak with Leitz.
"She's one of the best we've ever had, without a doubt," Alipaz said. "She certainly is one of our most accomplished doubles players. She's won with everybody."
Isip and the Gaels are far from finished. They'll get some time to rest up and practice, and SMC will next compete at the WCC Championships in San Diego beginning on April 25.