W. Tennis Sweeps No. 19 UCF, 5-0
CORAL GABLES, Fla. – The University of Miami women’s tennis team turned in a splendid performance Sunday afternoon at the Neil Schiff Tennis Center, rolling to a 5-0 triumph over No. 19 UCF.
No. 21 Miami (5-1) dropped just two sets against the Knights, en route to registering its second consecutive top-20 triumph.
“Honestly, our girls are just being tough. We’ve been focusing more on toughness than tennis and that’s what we’ve got to do moving forward,” Miami head coach Paige Yaroshuk-Tews said. “Our conference is tough; this is a huge out-of-conference win. But it comes down to staying healthy and staying tough. All these kids know how to play tennis, but not everybody knows how to put together the victory and we’ve been doing a good job of that. I think starting off by getting the doubles point helps our confidence moving forward.”
The Hurricanes turned in strong performances on all three doubles courts to take the opening point. Sophomores Audrey Boch-Collins and Isabella Pfennig got Miami off to a sizzling start by blanking Anique Kattenberg and Noel Saidenova, 6-0.
After UCF staved off a match point on Court 1, the Hurricanes turned to Court 2 to seal the point. There, third-year sophomores Diana Khodan and Maya Tahan, ranked No. 50, defeated Sophia Biolay and Nandini Sharma, 6-3, to give the home team the lead.
Fourth-year junior Daevenia Achong and fifth-year senior Eden Richardson held a 5-4 edge on Evgeniya Levashova and Marie Mattel when play stopped, and led 30-0 in the 10th game.
The Hurricanes jumped on UCF (4-3) early in singles play, taking five opening sets. Two Miami players then closed out their matches in a span of 15 minutes to up the edge from 1-0 to 3-0.
First, Achong topped Saidenova, 6-1, 6-2, in a dominant performance from start to finish. Then, Khodan took down Kattenbergm 6-0, 6-3, in an equally impressive showing.
It took approximately an hour for the next match to end, but when it did, another one followed suit just seconds later.
Tahan rallied from a 3-5 deficit in a second-set tiebreaker, taking four points in a row to defeat Sharma, 6-1, 7-6 (7-5), and clinch the match for Miami. Within moments, No. 92 Pfennig finished off a comeback triumph over No. 121 Mattel, 3-6, 6-2, 6-2, in a ranked showdown.
“I think Bella did an unbelievable job today,” Yaroshuk-Tews said. “She made some changes there, being down one set against a veteran player. To win the second and third sets, two and two, was big.”
When action halted, the Hurricanes were a game away from victory on yet another court, as Boch-Collins led Biolay, 6-4, 5-4. In the other ranked matchup, No. 89 Richardson and No. 48 Levashova were in the first game of set three, with the match score at 6-4, 4-6.
Miami improved to 12-0 all-time at home versus the Knights with Sunday’s victory, which also marked the 157th sweep of Yaroshuk-Tews’ illustrious 21-year tenure. It is her 100th shutout win in the last 14 seasons along, dating back to the start of the 2009 campaign.
Up next for Miami is its conference opener Friday at 5 p.m. against Georgia Tech at the Neil Schiff Tennis Center.
1. No. 43 Daevenia Achong/Eden Richardson (UM) vs. Evgeniya Levashova/Marie Mattel (UCF), 5-4, unf.
2. No. 50 Diana Khodan/Maya Tahan (UM) def. Sophia Biolay/Nandini Sharma (UCF), 6-3
3. Audrey Boch-Collins/Isabella Pfennig (UM) def. Anique Kattenberg/Noel Saidenova (UCF), 6-0
1. No. 89 Eden Richardson (UM) vs. No. 48 Evgeniya Levashova (UCF), 6-4, 4-6, unf.
2. Daevenia Achong (UM) def. Noel Saidenova (UCF), 6-1, 6-2
3. No. 92 Isabella Pfennig (UM) def. No. 121 Marie Mattel (UCF), 3-6, 6-2, 6-2
4. Audrey Boch-Collins (UM) vs. Sophia Biolay (UCF), 6-4, 5-4, unf.
5. Maya Tahan (UM) def. Nandini Sharma (UCF), 6-1, 7-6 (7-5)
6. Diana Khodan (UM) def. Anique Kattenberg (UCF), 6-0, 6-3