Photo by Ruben R. Ramirez
UTEP (4-6) claimed the doubles points and received wins from Lina Sachica, Veronika Lebisova and Elena DiBattista to win the Battle of I-10 at NM State (4-12), 4-1, on Sunday. The other matches went unfinished with the clinch format in place.
It marked the second win in the past three matches for the Miners, who also claimed their first victory over the Aggies in five years.
“We had a solid turnaround today after yesterday,” UTEP head coach Ivan Fernandez said. “NM State gave us all we could handle even though they were short-handed today. We clinched the doubles by winning at No. 2. On No. 1 we had a match point there as well. In the singles we knew it was going to be a battle, but we fought hard and were able to get it done. I’m very proud of the team for getting the win, and we will rest up tomorrow and get ready for Tuesday and Thursday.”
UTEP took No. 3 doubles by walkover, setting the Miners in prime position to secure the early lead in the match. They capitalized with Vanessa Valdez/Sachica downing Chloe Gavino/Bella Nguyen, 7-5, at No. 2 to give UTEP the point. Thassane Abrahim/ Lebisova were leading Harsha Challa/Gavi Kalaga, 5-4, at No. 1 when it was halted.
DiBattista won by walkover at No. 6 singles. Lebisova was locked in at No. 5, besting Nguyen, 6-2, 6-3, at No. 5. The Miners then clinched their first win against their rivals since 2016 when Sachica emerged victorious over Miranda Bishard, 6-3, 1-6, 6-0, at No. 3 singles.
NM State’s lone point came with Gavino besting Erandi Martinez, 6-1, 6-1, at No. 2 singles.
UTEP will wrap up its regular season this week when it plays host to UTRGV at 12 p.m. MT Tuesday and Tarleton State at 12 p.m. MT Thursday.
For complete coverage of UTEP tennis, be sure to follow the Miners on social media at @UTEPWTennis (Twitter), @UTEP_Tennis (Instagram) and on Facebook or click here to visit the official home of UTEP Athletics.
UTEP 4, New Mexico State 1
- Harsha Challa (NMSU) vs. Vanessa Valdez (UTEP) 2-6, 6-2, 3-2, unfinished
- Chloe Gavino (NMSU) def. Erandi Martinez (UTEP) 6-1, 6-1
- Lina Sachica (UTEP) def. Miranda Bishard (NMSU) 6-3, 1-6, 6-0
- Gavi Kalaga (NMSU) vs. Kathleen Percegona (UTEP) 6-2, 4-6, 3-1, unfinished
- Veronika Lebisova (UTEP) def. Bella Nguyen (NMSU) 6-2, 6-3
- Elena Dibattista (UTEP) def. No player (NMSU), by walkover
- Harsha Challa/Gavi Kalaga (NMSU) vs. Thassane Abrahim/Veronika Lebisova (UTEP) 4-5, unfinished
- Vanessa Valdez/Lina Sachica (UTEP) def. Chloe Gavino/Bella Nguyen (NMSU) 7-5
- Kathleen Percegona/Lyric Bonilla (UTEP) def. No player/No player (NMSU), by walkover
New Mexico State 4-12
Doubles order of finish | 3,2,uf
Singles order of finish | 6,2,5,3,uf,uf