HAMDEN, Conn. – The UConn women’s tennis team started off their fall season with a dominating performance at the Quinnipiac Invitational over the weekend. The Huskies posted a 28-6 singles record and went 6-3 in doubles on the way to winning all four singles flights and the top doubles flight at the eight team tournament.
“This was a great opening tournament for the team,” stated head coach Glenn Marshall. “We played very well in singles and were able to win all four of the singles flights. I was also impressed with our doubles team of Perrotta and Fitz-Randolph, who won the A doubles championship.”
Sophomore Jacquelyn Fitz-Randolph (Tampa, Fla.) took the “B” singles flight and teamed with classmate Gillian Perrotta (Scarsdale, N.Y.) to win the “A” doubles flight title. She won four-straight in singles play opening with a 6-3, 7-5 win over Army’s Kirby Einck and posting a 6-3, 6-2 win over Quinnipiac’s Layla Rodriguez in the quarters. Fitz-Randolph battled her way to three-set wins in the semis and the final. She topped Fordham’s Estelle Wong 6-3, 1-6, 10-2 to advance to the title match where she beat Mayu Sato of Fordham, 6-3, 4-6, 10-8.
In doubles, Fitz-Randolph and Perrotta won four in the “A” flight to take home the trophy. The duo opened their run with a 6-2 win over Sacred Heart’s Olivia Podsiebierski and Brianna Lauria. They advanced to the semifinals with a 6-2 win over Melanie Allen and Genevieve McCormick of Army and into the title match with a 6-2 win over Fordham’s Carina Ma and Maia Balce. The duo won the trophy by beating Quinnipiac’s Sydney Young and Rachel Horton, 7-5.
In the tournament’s top singles flight, a pair of Huskies dominated the bracket to advance to the final and share the “A” flight title. Senior Emma Alderman (Hingham, Mass.) posted a 6-4, 6-1 win over Risa Takenaka of Providence and then a pair of three-set wins to get to the final. Alderman needed to twice battle back from dropping the first set in her quarterfinal and semifinal matches, beating Army’s Rugile Valuniate, 5-7, 6-1 and 10-8, and Drexel’s Honami Yazawa, 4-6, 6-1, 10-5.
On the other side of the bracket, junior Yelyzaveta Pletnyeva (Vinnitsa, Ukranie) opened with a 6-2, 6-1 win over Drexel’s Ghita Benhadi and followed with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Army’s Genevieve McCormick in the quarters and a 6-1, 7-5 win over Carina Ma of Fordham in the semis.
In the “C” flight, junior Zaina Zaki (West Chester, Pa.) took the “C” flight title with four-straight wins. She opened with a 6-4, 6-3 win over Quinnipiac’s Nicole Katzarkov and advanced out of the quarterfinal with a 6-4, 6-2 win over Ryshena Providence of Drexel. She posted a 6-1, 7-5 win over Army’s Yuka Lin and won her first career singles title with a 6-2, 6-1 win over Kendra Bunch of Drexel.
UConn made it a clean sweep of the singles brackets with sophomore Jacqueline Lazaro (Largo, Fla.) sweeping through the “D” flight without dropping a set for her first career title. Lazaro started by beating Maggie Glynn of Sacred Heart, 6-0 and 6-0. She went 6-1, 6-3 over Army’s Danna Funaro and got to the final with a 6-2, 6-0 win over Drexel’s Fiorella Coria. In the title match, Lazaro beat Army’s Gloria Son, 6-2 and 7-5.
Junior Summer Walker (Conyers, Ga.) won a pair of matches in the “B” flight to advance to the semifinals before falling. Walker beat Young from QU, 6-2 and 6-3, and Melanie Allen of Army, 3-6, 6-1 and 10-1.
“It was an impressive weekend, considering the strength of teams we were competing against. The players were very focused, and I am proud of the way they competed all weekend.”
The Huskies are back in action next weekend at the Harvard Invitational.
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