Sports, Spring, Women's Tennis

Women’s Tennis Dealt Its First Loss by No. 18 Virginia

Boston College women’s tennis has been riding an incredible high ever since the season began. After easily handling several non-conference opponents, the Eagles recorded one of the biggest wins in program history by upsetting No. 10 Syracuse on Feb. 3. It was an impressive win over an ACC opponent that showcased BC’s talent. It was only a matter of time before the Eagles’ perfect record was tainted, though—and No. 18 Virginia took care of that on Saturday. In a close matchup on the road, BC fell to the Cavaliers, 5-2.

Just like they have done almost all season, the Eagles (9-1, 1-1 Atlantic Coast) started off the match well by winning the doubles point. Head coach Nigel Bentley continued to pair Yufei Long and Jackie Urbinati at the first doubles slot, and it once again paid off, as the duo triumphed over UVA’s (6-1, 2-1) Chloe Gullickson and Amber O’Dell, 6-4. Dasha Possokhova and Elene Tsokilauri did not fare as well at the second doubles position, falling to Vivian Glozman and Sofia Munera in a 6-1 blowout. But luckily for the Eagles, Natasha Irani and Kylie Wilcox brought the point home, beating Hunter Bleser and Meghan Kelley, 6-4.

It was a battle of two titans at first singles as No. 45 Kelley and No. 76 Long squared off. Kelley prevailed over the Iowa transfer, winning in straight sets, 6-4, 6-2. No. 108 Wilcox fell as well, but she gave it her all against Glozman. Wilcox triumphed in the first set, 6-4, but she lost a heartbreaking second set, 7-5. By this point, Wilcox was gassed, and she was handled, 6-1, in the last set. Urbinati also forced a third frame. The senior was crushed in the first set, 6-0, by Gullickson. She rebounded well by winning, 6-3, in the second set, but was unable to finish, losing, 6-3, in the third and final set.

Natasha Irani posted the lone win in the singles lineup for BC. Already building off an impressive doubles performance from earlier in the day, Irani beat O’Dell, 6-1, in the first set and came out on top in a tiebreaker in the second frame. Laura Lopez saw her winning streak come to an end, dropping a straight-sets decision to Munera. Maria Ross also suffered a similar fate, this time losing to Bleser.

All in all, it was a tough defeat for the Eagles, but it was bound to happen eventually. The ACC boasts some of the top teams in the country, and there are many teams that simply possess more talent and experience than BC. Still, the Eagles have already hit a huge milestone by picking up nine wins so early in the season. At this point, it’s a matter of notching as many ACC victories as possible and further developing the young players on the roster. With the way the Eagles are playing right now, they are in a prime position to achieve that.

Featured Image by Jonathan Ye / Heights Editor

February 16, 2019

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