TEMPE, Ariz.- UTEP women’s tennis doubles team of Vivienne Kulicke and Milou Pietersz were once again ranked in this week’s Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s Division I rankings.
The Miners came in at No. 55 of the top 60 pairs in the country mentioned. The duo, which is 8-1 this spring season and 18-5 since the fall, were previously ranked No. 48 in the Feb. 8 ITA rankings.
Since the last rankings, Kulicke and Pietersz tallied a 6-1 win over Houston’s Tsveta Dimitrova and Cristina Rovira as well as a 6-2 victory over Nebraska Kearney’s Ana Royo and Camryn Parnell. Matches against Wyoming and Colorado were unfinished as the Miners had already clinched the doubles point.
The Miner duo has also registered wins over Abilene Christian, UT-Arlington, Tulane, Arizona, Sacramento State and, most notably, a 6-1 upset of TCU’s then-No. 16 ranked Donika Bashota and Olaya Garrido-Rivas. Bashota and Garrido-Rivas are now ranked No. 13 in doubles.
Oklahoma’s Lily Miyazaki, then-ranked No. 10, and Julie Byrne gave the duo its only loss, 6-3. Miyazaki is now No. 22.
Kulicke and Pietersz, who also play the No. 1 and 2 spots in singles respectively, won the USTA/ITA Mountain Regional Championship in October, marking the first time in program history that a doubles team claimed a championship at the event. The pair advanced to the 2016 USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships in Flushing, N.Y. but ultimately fell in the consolation final to Michigan.
The Miners will return to action Friday (March 3) when they head to Flagstaff, Arizona to take on Northern Arizona in the first of three dual matches this weekend. First serve is at 2 p.m. MT.
ABILENE, Texas- Miner duo Vivian Kulicke and Milou Pietersz upset TCU’s No. 16 ranked (Intercollegiate Tennis Association) doubles team of Donika Bashota and Olaya Garrido-Rivas, but the UTEP tennis team fell to both TCU and Abilene Christian University on Saturday.
UTEP VS TCU
Kulicke and Pietersz brought the highlight of the day by taking down TCU’s No. 16 doubles tandem in Bashota and Garrido-Rivas 6-1. It was the only doubles win against TCU for the Miners, as the Horned Frogs claimed the final two doubles matches 7-5 and 6-4.
In singles play, the sole win for UTEP came from Kulicke, who defeated TCU’s Bashota 6-2, 6-4.
TCU took the 5-1 win over the Miners.
UTEP VS ACU
The Miners took a 3-0 lead but could not hold on, falling to ACU 4-3 in the final dual match in Abilene.
Kulicke and Pietersz stayed flawless throughout the day, grabbing another doubles win against ACU’s Whitney Williams and Lucile Pothier 7-5. Also tallying a win in doubles play was Daphne Visscher and Raven Bennett, taking out the Wildcat duo of Autumn Crossnoe and Jordan Henry 6-4.
Kulicke had her second consecutive undefeated weekend, sealing it with a win in singles play over Lucile Pothier 1-6, 6-4, 6-2.
Lois Wagenvoort was the only other singles win for the Miners by defeating Williiams 6-4, 6-4.
The Miners will be back in action Jan. 28 against Oklahoma. First serve in Norman, Okla. will be at 9 a.m. MT.