Sports Tennis

UH tennis battles through adversity in TCU tournament

The UH tennis team started the 2021 competing against multiple schools in the TCU tournament. The Cougars compete again on Sunday against Mcneese. | Lino Sandil/The Cougar

The UH tennis team started the 2021 competing against multiple schools in the TCU tournament. The Cougars compete again on Sunday against McNeese. | Lino Sandil/The Cougar

The Houston women’s tennis team started off its 2021 season with a four-day tournament in Fort Worth at TCU.

The Cougars competed in several matches, both in singles and doubles. Here is how they fared:

Day 1 – Saturday

The Cougars had eight singles and four double matchups and had a rough start to the tournament on day one, finishing winless under singles and winning two of the four doubles.

One of the closer matchups that did take place in the singles was UH junior Sophie Gerits against Texas A&M sophomore Renee McBryde, which started strong but Gerits ultimately lost 3-6, 6-2, 1-0 (6-0).

The other matches, however, ended without UH taking a set off an Aggies’ player.

The doubles matchups won included the UH freshmen tandem of Gabriela Giraldo and Blanca Cortijo defeating Texas A&M freshman Jessica Anzo and sophomore Katya Townsend, 6-2.

UH junior Stephanie Belovukovic and sophomore Manasi Reddy also defeated Aggies’ sophomore Isa Di Lara and freshman Elise Robbins in a shutout, finishing with a 6-0 rout.

Day 2 – Sunday

The Cougars had another eight singles and four doubles matches on Sunday, this time the singles were more favorable as they won three of the eight, but were winless through all four in the doubles.

Giraldo’s win against Central Arkansas’s freshman Paulina Engback was the most impressive match of the day, finishing with a 6-0, 6-1 score.

Notable wins for UH in the singles also include Gerits win against TCU junior Mercedes Aristegui and Chitdara’s dominating win against Rice junior Diae El Jardi, both finished in two sets.

Doubles were a struggle on day two, with three losses coming from TCU and another from Rice. Three of these ended with the same score of 6-4 in favor of TCU twice and Rice in another.

Day 3 – Monday

The UH tennis team had another eight single and four double matches on Monday and were able to split the singles and take one of the four double matches, which was their best day in terms of total wins with five.

The singles kicked off with a few losses but ended strong with some big wins, including another win for Gerits against Central Arkansas sophomore Mei Ishimura, 7-5, 6-1, and Cortijo winning with a sweep against Bears’ freshman Jaeun Lee.

In doubles, the Cougars lost all but one match and the lone win came from the pair of Gerits and Slisane, winning 6-4 against the Central Arkansas duo of Ishimura and junior Yada Vasupongchai.

Day 4 – Tuesday

The final day of the tournament had just six matchups for UH in singles and three doubles. The Cougars won four of the six singles and one of the three doubles matches.

Day four tied the previous win total at five but showed the highest win percentage of the tournament for the Cougars, winning five of the nine total matches.

The singles again produced the strongest showing for the UH tennis team, with statement wins from Slisane, who won her match 6-2, 2-1, and Manasi, who won her match 6-0, 6-3, both won by a fair margin.

Doubles were still a struggle, just a single win from the pair of Slisane and Gerit, who also had the lone double win on day three. The two won their match in a close 7-5 thriller to end the tournament.

The Cougars finished with 15 wins in the four days of the TCU tournament.

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