North Texas Daily

Tennis beats La. Tech in C-USA first round, loses to ODU in second round

Tennis beats La. Tech in C-USA first round, loses to ODU in second round

April 19
18:02 2015

Alex Lilley / Intern Writer

The Mean Green tennis team’s season came to an end Friday when it lost 4-3 to No. 66 Old Dominion University in the second round of the Conference USA tournament. After opening up the first round of the tournament with a 4-0 win over Louisiana Tech University, the Mean Green (9-14) fought for five long hours against ODU (16-6) but fell short.

La. Tech

Seniors Kseniya Bardabush and Franziska Sprinkmeyer won the first doubles match against La. Tech on Thursday 8-5. The doubles team of junior Anastasiya Shestakova and sophomore Alexis Thoma beat their opponents 8-3 to score the first point for North Texas.

In singles match ups, Sprinkmeyer scored the fastest win of the day shutting down her opponent 6-0, 6-1, in just 45 minutes.

“We felt very confident with how we prepared. Everyone had lots of energy, and it was a very good first match,” Sprinkmeyer said.

That victory was followed by a 6-2, 6-4 win by junior Agustina Valenzuela, and the final singles match of the day was a 6-2, 6-1 win by sophomore Ana Sofia Cordero. Head Coach Sujay Lama said practice was one of the keys to advancing past La. Tech.

“The preparation was fantastic, and the effort was great. We went there with the mindset of leaving the tournament with a trophy,” Lama said.

Old Dominion

The team carried that mindset into the second round, which was a close fight throughout the day, but Old Dominion came out on top 4-3 to knock North Texas out.

Old Dominion took an early advantage in the match by taking the doubles point. Sprinkmeyer and Bardabush had the only North Texas win, beating their opponent 8-2, the other two teams fell to ODU 8-2 and 8-4.

This was the final doubles match for seniors Sprinkmeyer and Bardabush after winning 37 out of 56 matchups throughout their North Texas careers.

“They looked pretty formidable in both of their matches, they looked like veterans, like seniors,” Lama said.

During singles matches, it was back and forth all day. Valenzuela opened up the day with a 6-3, 6-4 victory. Junior Kamilla Galieva followed suit with another impressive 6-2, 6-3 win.

Shestakova beat her opponent as well, giving Mean Green a 3-1 lead and chance to finish ODU.

Shestakova and Valenzuela were the only players to secure singles wins in both matches of the tournament.

“I was really proud of Anastasiya. She was frustrated after losing in doubles, but really showed a good fight in singles,” Bardabush said. “She played amazing.”

Bardabush and Thoma both lost their singles leaving the last match, and chance for North Texas to continue on, for Sprinkmeyer. Through three, hard-fought, rounds Sprinkmeyer battled ODU’s Ivana Vudovic but lost  7-6.

“It was very emotional. I wanted to get the win for the team, but it just didn’t happen. I’m still thinking back on it and what I could have done differently,” Sprinkmeyer said.

Lama said although the loss was heart-breaking, the players all performed admirably and showed the right kind of attitude throughout the tournament.

“That’s sports. That’s life,” Lama said. “You just go to look at the positives and those are that our kids fought hard and gave everything they had.”

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