STORRS, Conn. – The UConn women’s tennis team got their 2017 spring season started on Sunday with a 7-0 clean sweep of the University of Rhode Island at the East Hartford Tennis Club. The Huskies are now 2-1 in dual match play this season.
"This was a nice match to start our spring season," commented head coach Glenn Marshall. "All of our players got a chance to play in the match today, and they all came out focused and ready to play. The doubles teams set the tone today, with convincing wins in all three positions. In singles, Liz, Summer, Shea and Zaina, had dominating wins over their opponents. Fitz and a Emma had more of a challenge today, but came through strong in each of their matches."
The Huskies started their first match of the spring by sweeping all three doubles matches to grab a 1-0 lead. Senior Emma Alderman (Hingham, Mass.) and junior Yelyzaveta Pletnyeva (Vinnitsa, Ukraine) posted a 6-3 win at the No. 1 spot over Tiara Higuchi and Mihaela Codreanu.
At No. 2, the sophomore duo of Jacquelyn Fitz-Randolph (Tampa, Fla.) and Gillian Perrotta (Scarsdale, N.Y.) earned their ninth win on the season and improved to 7-3 in their last 10 matches thanks to a 6-2 win over Emily Zargham and Nicole Legler. The Huskies made it a clean sweep at No. 3 with junior Zaina Zaki (West Chester, Pa.) and sophomore Jacqueline Lazaro (Largo, Fla.) beating Ariel Haber and Paige Alshon, 6-3.
Alderman led the singles sweep at No. 1, beating Codreanu, 7-6 (3) and 6-3. Pletnyeva and Zaki both improved to 7-3 over their last 10 matches thanks to wins at No. 2 and No. 6, respectively. Pletnyeva took care of Higuchi, 6-2 and 6-0 and improved to 9-3 on the year. Zaki grabbed her seventh win by beating Nicole Legler, 6-2 and 6-0.
Junior Summer Walker (Conyers, Ga.) also earned her seventh singles win on the year by beating Haber at No. 4, 6-0 and 6-1. Senior Shea Flanagan (Overland Park, Kans.) didn’t drop a point in beating Alshon at No. 5, 6-0, 6-0.
Fitz-Randolph needed three sets to pick-up her sixth win on the season, rebounding from losing the first set, 6-4 to Zargham at No. 3 and going on to win 6-1 and 10-5 in the tie-breaker set.
The Huskies will hit the road and travel to the Midwest for a pair of matches next weekend. UConn will head to Kansas State on Friday, Feb. 3 and UMKC on Sunday, Feb. 5.