LAS CRUCES – UTEP’s Thassane Abrahim and Veronica Lebisova teamed up to win a pair of doubles matches to advance into the semifinals, highlighting the action for the Miner tennis team on day two of the NM State Aggie Invite Saturday.
The duo started things off with a 6-3 dispatching of Gavi Kalaga and Miranda Bishard (NM State) in the round of 16. The pair kept it up with another 6-3 win in the quarterfinals, this time toppling Sanne Schalekamp and Hsuan Huang (New Mexico).
Abrahim and Lebisova each took care of business in singles action as well. Lebisova blasted Julia Tossi (WNMU), 6-0, 6-0. Abrahim also had a double-bagel victory, blasting Andrea Arnautu (WNMU), 6-0, 6-0, to punch her ticket to the backdraw finals.
“It was another solid day today,” UTEP head coach Ivan Fernandez said. “The two standout players today were Tuca (Thassane Abrahim) and Vero (Veronika Lebisova). They won both doubles matches to get into the semifinals of the doubles draw tomorrow. They each won their singles matches. I felt like we competed well all day, although some of the matches didn’t go our way. The conditions have been very tough with the heat and the amount of tennis we played. We are getting better with every match, and I really like what I am seeing from this team.”
Kathleen Percegona and Eve Daniels were edged, 7-6, by fourth-seeded MaryJoe Crisologo and Ileana Mocciola (ACU) in the round of 16. The duo regrouped to take out NM State’s Bella Nguyen and Melisa Cartis, 7-5.
Lyric Bonilla and Laura Schmitz drilled WNMU’s Arnautu and Kajsa Gedlitschka, 6-2, in the round of 16. The duo played well only to be clipped, 7-5, vs. second-seeded NM State’s Harsha Challa and Georgia Townsend in the quarterfinals.
Lina Sachica and Elena Dibattista were upended, 6-3, by New Mexico’s Schalekamp and Huang. The pairing then fell by a count of 6-1 against NM State’s Kalaga and Bishard.
Schmitz’s aspirations of a title were stopped in the semifinals by second-seeded Huang (New Mexico), 6-4, 6-0. Bonilla came up shy, 6-4, 7-6, in the other semifinal of the bracket against Satoho Toriumi (New Mexico).
Dibattista nailed Peggy Eloundou Nga (NMMI), 6-2, 6-2. Daniels knocked off Eva Arranz (ACU), 6-3, 7-6.
Sachica was tripped up by Linda Clair Eloundou Nga (NMMI), 6-2, 6-3. Percegona fell to Schalekamp (New Mexico), 7-5, 6-3.
The Orange and Blue will conclude their first fall tournament in two years on Sunday.