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Richardson Leads Miami on Season’s Opening Weekend

Richardson Leads Miami on Season’s Opening Weekend

by Alex Schwartz

CARY, N.C. The University of Miami women’s tennis team started its 2021 fall slate this weekend at the Fall Ranked Spotlight.

Five Hurricanes competed against stellar opposition across four days of action at Cary Tennis Park in Cary, N.C., combining for a 9-13 mark in singles and a 3-3 ledger in doubles. Six of Miami’s 22 singles matches came against ranked foes, including five in the top 60, while two of its doubles outings were versus top-50 pairs.

“We really wanted to compete against some of the best players in the country for our first event of the fall,” Miami associate head coach Alex Santos said. “There wasn’t a single mat h that didn’t demand everything we had inside in order to have a chance to succeed. We end the event not only being a better team, but also with a clear picture of what we have to work on.”

Fifth-year senior Eden Richardson paced Miami throughout the tournament in her first weekend as a Hurricane. She went 3-1 in singles and 2-1 in doubles to post a 5-2 mark across all competitions.

An LSU transfer Richardson rattled off three consecutive wins on Friday and Saturday—the last of which was a 5-7, 6-3, 6-3 comeback over South Carolina’s Allie Gretkowski—to reach the semifinals of the Singles B Flight Main Draw. Once there, she came up just short in a three-set thriller against Ohio State’s Sydni Ratliff, 6-1, 6-7 (7-9), 4-6.

In doubles, Richardson and fourth-year junior Daevenia Achong won both of their matches Thursday to begin the season. That included a 6-2 victory over Tennessee’s Tenika McGiffin and Eleonara Molinaro, as well as a 6-4 triumph versus Ohio State’s Luna Dormet and Lucia Marzal.

Achong, the longest-tenured Hurricane on the roster, went 2-3 in singles facing a gauntlet of a scheduled that featured four top-60 foes and one who used to be in the top 50. She capped the weekend in splendid fashion, notching a 7-6 (7-1), 6-1 victory over No. 50 Megan Davies, good for the third top-50 win of her career and first since Feb. 14, 2020.

Sophomore Isabella Pfennig, ranked No. 16 nationally, joined Achong in the Singles A Flight as its third overall seed and totaled a 1-4 mark. Three of her defeats came against ranked players, including a heartbreaking 6-4, 3-6, 0-1 (11-13) setback against No. 20 Valeriya Zeleva of UCF to end the weekend.

In doubles, Pfennig posted a 1-2 recorded third-year sophomore Diana Khodan in the A Group. The tandem, ranked No. 31 nationally, took on two top-50 duos and played a third that features an individual ranked second in the country with a different partner.

The victory for Pfennig and Khodan came Thursday evening when they took a hard-fought 7-6 (7-3) win against No. 46 Jaedan Brown and Kari Miller of Michigan.

Khodan, meanwhile, turned in a 2-2 ledger in singles competition. Both of her wins came against fellow ACC players, as she topped NC State’s Sara Nayar, 6-2, 6-3, and Virginia’s Hibah Shaikh, 2-6, 7-6 (7-2), 1-0 (11-9).

Sophomore Audrey-Boch Collins competed only in singles and did so as the third seed in the Singles B Flight. A transfer from Baylor, Boch-Collins went 1-3 on the weekend, also defeating the lone ACC competitor she met, as she tallied a 6-2, 6-2 result versus Amelia Rajecki of NC State.

Pfennig will be back in action Oct. 6-10 in Charleston, S.C., for the ITA Women’s All-American Championships Presented by LTP. Other Miami players will resume competition Oct. 14-17 at the ITA Southeast Regional Championships in Orlando, Fla.

To keep up with the University of Miami women’s tennis team on social media, follow @CanesWTennis on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

THURSDAY RESULTS

Doubles A Group – Round Robin
No. 40 Megan Davies/Allie Gretkowski (SC) def. No. 31 Diana Khodan/Isabella Pfennig (UM), 6-2
No. 31 Diana Khodan/Isabella Pfennig (UM) def. No. 46 Jaedan Brown/Kari Miller (MI), 7-6 (7-3)

Doubles D Group – Round Robin
Daevenia Achong/Eden Richardson (UM) def. Tenika McGiffin/Eleonara Molinaro (TN), 6-2
Daevenia Achong/Eden Richardson (UM) def. Luna Dormet/Lucia Marzal (OS), 6-4

FRIDAY RESULTS

Singles A Flight – Main Draw Round of 32
No. 7 [1] Irina Cantos (OS) def. Daevenia Achong (UM), 6-3, 7-5
No. 16 [3] Isabella Pfennig (UM) def. Alexandra Pisareva (OU), 6-4, 6-0

Singles B Flight – Main Draw Round of 32
Eden Richardson (UM) def. Eleonara Molinaro (TN), 6-1, 6-2
Diana Khodan (UM) advances via bye
[3] Audrey Boch-Collins (UM) advances via bye

Singles A – Main Draw Round of 16
No. 56 [9-16] Eryna Cayetano (USC) def. No. 16 [3] Isabella Pfennig (UM), 3-6, 6-2, 6-0

Singles A – Back Draw Round of 16
No. 55 [9-16] Rebeka Mertena (TN) def. Daevenia Achong (UM), 6-2, 6-4

Singles B – Main Draw Round of 16
Eden Richardson (UM) def. Neha Velaga (PRI), 7-5, 3-6, 6-2
[1] Emma Staker (OU) def. Diana Khodan (UM), 6-3, 6-3
Tenika McGiffin (TN) def. [3] Audrey Boch-Collins (UM), 6-1, 7-6 (7-2)

SATURDAY RESULTS

Singles A Flight – Consolation South Draw First Round
Daevenia Achong (UM) def. Margaryta Bilokin (DU), 6-4, 6-2

Singles A Flight – Consolation North Draw First Round
Elaine Chervinsky (VA) def. No. 16 [3] Isabella Pfennig (UM), 6-3, 6-4

Singles A Flight – Consolation South Draw Second Round
No. 29 [5-8] Ayana Akli (SC) def. Daevenia Achong (UM), 7-6 (11-9), 6-3

Singles A Flight – Consolation Northwest Draw First Round
No. 111 Jaeda Daniel (ST) def. No. 16 [3] Isabella Pfennig (UM), 6-3, 6-2

Singles B Flight – Main Draw Quarterfinals
Eden Richardson (UM) def. Allie Gretkowski (SC), 5-7, 6-3, 6-3

Singles B Flight – Back Draw Quarterfinals
Diana Khodan (UM) def. Sara Nayar (ST), 6-2, 6-3
[3] Audrey Boch-Collins (UM) def. Amelia Rajecki (ST), 6-2, 6-2

Singles B Flight – Main Draw Semifinals
Sydni Ratliff (OS) def. Eden Richardson (UM), 1-6, 7-6 (9-7), 6-4

Singles B Flight – Back Draw Semifinals
Neha Velaga (PRI) def. Diana Khodan (UM), 7-5, 6-3
Andrea Cerdan (MI) def. [3] Audrey Boch-Collins (UM), 7-6 (7-4), 6-1

SUNDAY RESULTS

Singles A Flight – Consolation East-Southeast Draw
Daevenia Achong (UM) def. No. 50 [9-16] Megan Davies (SC), 7-6 (7-1), 6-1

Singles A Flight – Consolation North-Northwest Draw
No. 16 [3] Isabella Pfennig (UM) def. No. 102 Brianna Shvets (PRI), walkover

Singles A Flight – Miscellaneous Consolation
No. 20 [5-8] Valeriya Zeleva (UCF) def. No. 16 [3] Isabella Pfennig (UM), 4-6, 6-3, 1-0 (13-11)

Singles B Flight – Miscellaneous Consolation
Diana Khodan (UM) def. Hibah Shikah (VA), 2-6, 7-6 (7-2), 1-0 (11-9)
Marcelina Podlinska (OU) def. [3] Audrey Boch-Collins (UM), 4-6, 6-1, 1-0 (10-5)

Doubles A:B Groups – Third-Place Finishers
Chloe Beck/Emma Jackson (DU) def. No. 31 Diana Khodan/Isabella Pfennig (UM), 6-4

Doubles C:D Groups – Final
Salma Ewing/Snow Han (USC) def. Daevenia Achong/Eden Richardson (UM), 6-4