Tennis dominates Holy Cross for third straight win

Tennis kept their winning way going Saturday, putting on another strong performance against Holy Cross. PHOTO CREDIT:

In yet another strong performance, the University of Rhode Island tennis team picked up their third consecutive win last Saturday against Holy Cross at the International Tennis Hall of Fame.

The team, now 6-2, competed and won all three double matches along with all six of their singles matches to sweep the Crusaders 7-0. 

“Things went really well for us this past weekend,” Head Tennis Coach Val Villucci said. “We were able to secure our matches pretty significantly all the way down the line. We really stepped up and played to our potential.” 

Rhode Island started off strong with doubles wins from sophomores Valentina Cvackova and Klara Nelander, who won their match 6-0, and seniors Erin and Sydney Chratian, who won their match 6-1.

The third doubles victory of the afternoon was achieved by graduate student Tiara Higuchi and senior Nadia Rajan when competing against Holy Cross’s Caroline Carlson and Caroline Fredey. The two only gave up two games in this match, coming away with a 6-2 victory.

“Going into a match knowing that you’re ‘supposed to’ beat them can be really difficult sometimes,” Rajan said.

Rajan also pointed out the importance of staying focused during these kinds of matches to ensure all team members keep their heads in the game.

The team continued their success as they moved on to the singles matches, starting with Nelander winning 6-0, 6-0 at No. 6 singles.

“This weekend, I think both the team and myself did pretty well,” Nelander said. “I tried to stay concentrated and focused on the things that I could control and that led to having a lot of fun as I played overall.”

Villucci suggested that Nelander’s performance has been greatly improving. 

“She has been beating her plays convincingly and really standing out; you can see it in her outcomes,” Villucci said. 

Erin Chratian added another singles victory for the Rams, winning 6-1, 6-0 at No. 3 singles. Her two victories on the weekend helped her earn the Atlantic 10 Women’s Tennis Performer of the Week award. 

The next Rhody success was a win from Higuchi with nearly the same score of 6-0, 6-1 at 

No. 4 singles. 

Only giving up one set, Cvackova won the other two sets in this match 6-0, 10-6 at No. 1 singles. Rajan was next to win in straight sets against Ahana Nargakatti, with scores of 6-1, 6-2 at No. 2 singles. 

These last three matches to close out the win for the Rams on Saturday also included a performance from Sydney Chratian at No. 5 singles. Chratian was victorious after beating Holy Cross’s Jasmine Rahman in a tiebreaker in the first set 7-6 and with a score of 6-3 in the second set. 

“I am just really proud of my team,” Rajan said. “Having this third straight win and continuing our winning streak is really good for our confidence, [especially] with our next match against Stony Brook coming up.”

As Rajan noted, the team returns to court Friday when they take on Stony Brook at 12:30 p.m. at the International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport.