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Tennis falls to No. 20 TCU, looks forward to former champions
Caitlyn Alvarado / Staff Writer
The Mean Green’s winning streak came to a halt yesterday as it lost to rival No. 20 Texas Christian University, 4-2.
Last season, the Mean Green was able to upset then-No. 44 TCU in Forth Worth, but this year the Horned Frogs returned the favor, downing the Mean Green at the Waranch Tennis Complex.
“I was really proud of their effort,” head coach Sujay Lama said. “We just lost to a team that played better than us today. They had to play great tennis and dig deep to win.”
No. 47 UNT (6-2) started off ahead taking the doubles point with a win from senior Ilona Serchenko and freshman Dane’ Joubert, 8-2 on court three followed by a win from sophomores Kseniya Bardabush and Franziska Sprinkmeyer, 9-7 on court two.
“I especially liked the way we played doubles,” Lama said. “For a while I thought we were in charge of the match but you have to give [TCU] credit because they fought hard.”
Senior Valentina Starkova was the first single to finish both sets, which she lost 6-2. Senior team captain Barbora Vykydalova then answered back with a win to give UNT the lead again.
“We played some ugly tennis,” Vykydalova said. “The wind and the cold air made us play ugly. Singles for me was a mental game. I tried to fight for every point. I lost singles last time so this was me playing myself and fighting for myself.”
Though the team fought hard, Vykydalova’s win would be the last one for the Mean Green as TCU (7-1) rallied to take the match. Freshman Agustina Valenzuela’s match went unfinished.
“Just about every single player fought really hard,” Lama said. “When you have that kind of effort there are no regrets.”
This weekend the team will play Georgia Tech University and Miami University of Ohio in Atlanta, Ga. In 2007, Georgia Tech won the Division-I women’s tennis championship. The matches will take place on Friday at 4 p.m. and on Saturday at noon, respectively.
“We have to take the same kind of energy into our doubles this weekend,” Lama said. “In singles we need to have a faster start. Some got off to a little bit of a slow start so that had an effect.”
The team will be leaving today and will have a light practice before competing this weekend.
“We have to say focused,” Sprinkmeyer said. “We always want to want to win, but we want to just make sure we play good tennis. TCU is practice too, so we are going to use that for this weekend.”