After suffering a difficult loss at the hands of No. 2 UCLA last weekend, Texas A&M women’s tennis was able to return to its winning ways Saturday with wins over SMU and Abilene Christian. The Aggies beat SMU 4-0 and Abilene Christian 6-1.
“I'm very pleased with our performance today,” A&M coach Mark Weaver told the 12thman.com. “It definitely was a long day when you combine the rain delay and doubleheaders, but I was really proud of the girls for the attitudes they had today. SMU played a great match, and they are a much-improved team. They [SMU] came in and played us well, and I think that was our first true dog fight of the year. I'm truly delighted that we were challenged the way we were. ACU played excellent doubles against us, and I was a bit disappointed with the energy we were playing with there, but overall, we responded very well on the singles side. We really got down to business in singles play today.”
The Aggies won their first doubles match of the day after Jessica Anzo and Riley McQuaid beat SMU’s Nicole Petchey and Hadley Doyle 6-1. A&M was able to clinch the doubles point after Tatiana Makarova and Jayci Goldsmith beat Jackie Nylander and Chandler Carter from SMU 6-3.
The play then moved on to singles. The Aggies quickly picked up their first two points from singles after McQuaid beat Kiana Graham 6-2, 6-1 and Dorthea Faa-Hviding beat Winslow Huth 6-1, 6-2.
A&M clinched the first match win of the double header after Goldsmith beat Doyle 7-6, 1-6, 6-2 in a 3 set match.
The Aggies started off the second match on the wrong foot against Abilene Christian after Renee McBride and Katya Townsend lost to Abilene’s Alison Stewart and Slyvia Viljoen 6-3. Abilene was able to clinch the doubles after Maryjoe Crisologo and Nini Memishishi beat A&M’s Anzo and Elise Robbins 6-4.
However A&M was able to get back on track during the singles part of the match. Makarova started it off by winning 6-0, 6-0 over Memishishi.
The Aggies were able to pick up another four points shortly afterwards after McQuaid beat Ileana Mocciola 6-0, 6-1, Anzo beat Stewart 6-1, 6-1, Faa-Hviding defeated Viljoen 6-1,6-1, and Isa Di Laura won over Clair Fisher 6-1, 6-2. This put the Aggies up 5-1 over Abilene.
A&M picked up the clinching point after Townsend defeated Crisologo 6-4, 6-1.
One of the top performers of the day was McQuaid. She went undefeated on the day and attributed her success to the fans in attendance.
“I have to thank the crowd,” McQuaid told the 12thman.com. “They were getting a little crazy tonight and it was super fun getting to interact with them. I knew that I wanted to go out there and put a point on the board for my team, and looking down at the other courts, it was super motivating to see my girls fighting right next to me. It's always a great experience playing on the courts here in Aggieland.”
Weaver also heaped praise onto McQuaid after her performance.
“Riley [McQuaid] played excellent,” Coach Weaver told the 12thman.com. “She was a bit of a crowd favorite out there, and she really had the crowd going because she plays with a lot of excitement and energy. We had a really excellent crowd in our first match and we also had a few stick around for the second, and they really got behind her while she was playing. She's always a fun player to watch.”
The two wins improved A&M’s record to 5-1 on the season.
Up next for the Aggies is a midweek match against the TCU Horned Frogs in Bayard H. Friedman Tennis Center in Fort Worth, Texas. The match is scheduled for a 2 p.m start.