MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – The UTEP women’s tennis team’s run at the 2016 C-USA Tennis Championships ended in the first round of action, as the Miners dropped a 4-1 decision to Southern MissThursday morning at the Adams Tennis Center in Murfreesboro, Tenn.
The Miners (11-11, 2-2 C-USA) were unable to get any momentum going against the Golden Eagles (17-3-1, 1-1 C-USA), who picked up the doubles point, before taking three singles matches to get the victory.
“Clearly it’s disappointing to finish the year this way,” head coach Roberto Aspillaga said. “We lost a few matches this season where we had all sorts of chances and we don’t seem to know how to capitalize. We are a few games away from having a completely different season, and that can be frustrating. At the same time, in order to put ourselves in a position to win, you must compete well to start with.”
In doubles action, Southern Miss was able to use the early break at the No. 1 and No. 3 doubles to take the lead. The Golden Eagles were able to open with a 6-2 win on court one, while the pair on court three finished off the doubles point with a 7-6 (7-3) win of their own.
The lead grew to 2-0 for Southern Miss after Lois Wagenvoort dropped her match on court two to Alex Kitchen, 6-1, 6-2. Duda Santos made it 2-1 for UTEP after taking down Rikeetha Pareira, 6-2, 6-2, at the No. 3 spot. The Golden Eagles advanced to 3-1 after Raven Bennett was defeated on court six by Elena Roca, 6-3, 6-3.
No. 122 Vivienne Kulicke fought off numerous match points on court one, but Carolin Drescher clinched the match for Southern Miss with a 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 win.
“I feel that there has been important growing completely within the team this year and the next step is to learn how to close matches,” Aspillaga said. “Overall, the team has gotten closer and we are getting better, that’s something I am happy about. This was one of the toughest schedules UTEP has had and the girls have represented the university in a very good way. I am excited for what is coming ahead and looking forward to a new season with the team.”
- Carolin Drescher (USMW) def. No. 122 Vivienne Kulicke (UTEP) 4-6, 6-3, 6-3
- Alex Kitchen (USMW) def. Lois Wagenvoort (UTEP) 6-1, 6-2
- Duda Santos (UTEP) def. Rikeetha Pereira (USMW) 6-2, 6-3
- Tjasa Jerse (USMW) vs. Daphne Visscher (UTEP) 3-6, 6-3, 5-2, unfinished
- Matilda Tench (UTEP) vs. Claudia Castella (USMW) no result
- Elena Roca (USMW) def. Raven Bennett (UTEP) 6-3, 6-3
- Alex Kitchen/Carolin Drescher (USMW) def. Vivienne Kulicke/Duda Santos (UTEP) 6-2
- Rikeetha Pereira/Claudia Castella (USMW) vs. Matilda Tench/Lois Wagenvoort (UTEP) 5-6, unfinished
- Tjasa Jerse/Elena Roca (USMW) def. Raven Bennett/Daphne Visscher (UTEP) 7-6 (7-3)