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Miners Fall to Abilene Christian in Home Opener

The UTEP women’s tennis team lost 4-3, this time at the hands of Abilene Christian on Saturday at the Coronado Country Club.

The Wildcats won two doubles matches to earn the key team point. Duda Santos paired up with Vivienne Kulicke to win a game at doubles competition against Erin Walker and Whitney Williams, 6-2.

“We are disappointed for not taking advantage of all the opportunities we had to win the match, but we are especially not happy with the way we played the doubles,” head coach Roberto Aspillaga said.  “We played too safe and that ultimately made the difference. The bigger picture is that we have to maintain a playing identity at all times, no matter who we play or how we feel. It is more important than winning or losing. We strive to play aggressive and purpose-driven doubles play here at UTEP and today we did not do that across the board.”

After dropping the match-point opportunity in doubles, the Miners picked up wins on three courts but it was not enough as ACU closed out the match, 4-3. Vivienne Kulicke defeated Erin Walker on court one (6-4, 6-3), while Matilda Tench beat Jordan Henry on court No. 5, (6-2, 6-5). Freshman standout, Raven Bennett, earned the last point for UTEP by taking down Whitney Williams (6-2, 7-5) on court No. 6.

“I felt that we did a great job coming back in singles,” Aspillaga said. “Daphne got herself in a position to close her singles match, playing the best tennis I have seen her play this year. Her level came down a bit at the time of closing, but a lot of credit goes out to ACU for stepping up their game under pressure. Ultimately, it would have been much easier for us to play the way we always do in doubles and take advantage of the opportunities we had then, rather than relying on Daphne to close that singles match. It was simply unnecessary for her to be in that position to begin with.”

“Now we have to rest, evaluate the footage and learn from this match. I am confident that the team will continue to grow and move forward,” said Aspillaga.

The Miners are next in action on Feb. 26 when they host Northern Arizona at The El Paso Country Club starting with doubles at1 p.m. (MT).

SINGLES COMPETITION

1. Vivienne Kulicke (UTEP) def. Erin Walker (ACU) 6-4, 6-3

2. Kaysie Hermsdorf (ACU) def. Lois Wagenvoort (UTEP) 6-4, 6-4

3. Nada Marjanovic (ACU) def. Duda Santos (UTEP) 6-2, 6-2

4. Lucile Pothier (ACU) def. Daphne Visscher (UTEP) 6-4, 3-6, 7-5

5. Matilda Tench (UTEP) def. Jordan Henry (ACU) 6-2, 7-5

6. Raven Bennett (UTEP) def. Whitney Williams (ACU) 6-2, 7-5

DOUBLES COMPETITION

1. Duda Santos/Vivienne Kulicke (UTEP) def. Erin Walker/Whitney Williams (ACU) 6-2

2. Lucile Pothier/Kaysie Hermsdorf (ACU) def. Daphne Visscher/Lois Wagenvoort (UTEP) 6-3

3. Andrea Crook/Nada Marjanovic (ACU) def. Matilda Tench/Raven Bennett (UTEP) 7-6 (8-6)

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