UH tennis suffers lopsided loss to Rice in regular-season finale
The Houston tennis team faced off against No. 37 Rice on Sunday at the Barbara Wallace Winston Tennis Facility, wrapping up the 2021 regular season for the Cougars.
The Owls (14-5, 2-1 Conference USA) were expected to be a “test” for the Cougars (14-7, 3-2 American Athletic Conference) as head coach Helena Besovic put it on Friday before the meeting, though the test proved to be too much as the Cougars fell 5-0 in the matchup.
Doubles kicked off the afternoon at UH as the Cougars split the first two matches, but fell in the final match, giving Rice the point.
The UH tennis team’s pairing of sophomore Azul Pedemonti and freshman Blanca Cortijo Parreno fell first to Rice senior Linda Huang and junior Anastasia Smirnova in a 6-4 battle.
Senior Mimi Kendall-Woseley and freshman Laura Slisane fell to the Owls pair of junior Daie El Jardi and sophomore Maria Budin 7-6, 6-1 in the match point, giving the Owls the point.
Senior Phonexay Chitdara and junior Sophie Gerits were the lone UH pair to get a win in the doubles.
Singles were a struggle for the Cougars as they went winless on the afternoon. Parreno and Slisane both fell in tough matches before sudden rain interrupted the day, though the matches resumed shortly after.
The Cougars tried to hang in as both Pedemonti and Kendall-Woseley went into tiebreakers, but both fell in the tight battles to finish up the day at 5-0 for Rice
Pedemonti lost in the closest match, 7-6 (7-5), 7-5 to Rice senior Anna Bowtell, and Kendall-Woseley fell 6-3, 7-6 (7-5) to Rice Senior Michaela Haet.
The UH tennis team’s next stop is in Orlando, Florida, for the AAC Championships, in which they will compete from Thursday through Sunday. The event is a single-elimination team tournament that will not have an individual portion.