Rhode Island won every singles match in a 7-0 win on Saturday. PHOTO CREDIT: gorhody.com
The University of Rhode Island Women’s Tennis team defeated Stonehill College with 7-0 score in their fourth match of the season playing on their home court in Newport on Saturday.
In the weeks leading up to their most recent match, the Ram’s lost to Boston University only winning one match leaving the score at a 1-6 game outcome. In the following match, it was a close game against Siena College, however the ending score resulted in a 3-4 game loss for the Ram’s. After losing their previous two matches against Boston University and Sienna, the Rams’ motivation was higher than ever. The lively energy of the team has stayed consistent throughout the start of the season and the team is determined to continue that same enthusiasm for their upcoming matches, Assistant Coach Tracy-Lee Miller highlighted.
The doubles teams were the first to compete in the match. Starting off strong, number two doubles partners freshman Nikki Fernando and junior Klara Nelander were the first to finish their match, taking down Stonehill’s Steffi Antao and Lily Peter with a 6-0 win.
Not too long after, number one double partners, junior Valentina Cvackova and freshman Sophie Herman, beat Cristina Solorzano Valencia and Anneliese Beltran with a 6-3 win. Number three doubles partners, graduate student Paulina Loredo and freshman Ava Grnja, were defeated by Marissa Such and Camilia Zuluaga Rodriguez with their match ending with a 6-4 result.
All singles players overcame their opponents, giving Rhody a win for each match. Number four singles player Klara Nelander finished in straight sets, defeating Stonehill’s Lily Peter. Number three singles Herman finished next with a 6-0 win in the first set and a 6-4 win in the second set, taking down Anneliese Beltran. Number one singles Cvackova defeated Cristina Solorzano Valencia with a 6-2 win in the first set and a 6-1 win in the second set.
Number six singles Paulina Loredo beat Marissa Such with a 6-1, 6-0 win. Number five singles freshman Ava Grnja took down Camila Zuluaga Rodriguez in a 6-2, 6-2 win. Herman was the last to walk off the court after defeating Steffi Anato with a 6-4, 6-0 win.
The majority of the players on the team this year is made up of underclassmen, and for some of those players, it is their first time playing within a team environment. Assistant Coach Miller pointed out that there is a lot of energy brought to each match whether it is home or away.
Miller discussed that some players might have more nerves than others depending on the location of the match. However, she explained that even though nerves might have a negative stigma in some cases, they can actually contribute to the teams playing in a positive way.
“I think it depends on the player if the match being home or away is gonna reduce their nerves. If a player’s friends and family are there at a match that might take away some of the nerves,” Miller said.
The anticipation leading up to the upcoming matches brings extra nerves to the players, Miller pointed out. Losing a match to Siena in a 1-6 outcome, but then winning their most recent match against Stonehill with a 7-0 win, it gave the team a clean slate to keep that high energy and determination heading into the next couple of matches.
“Playing against Providence College, there is extra excitement going into that match.” coach Miller said. “They are also a young team, so we just have to stay focused and continue to be competitive throughout the match.”
“Quinnipiac is going to be a tough but good team to play,” Herman said. Coach Miller highlighted that the team is made up of fierce competitors that don’t let a loss shake their confidence. If anything, that has become their most dominant trait as an athlete. As they take on Providence College and Quinnipiac within the next week, the team is comforted to be heading into those matches with a new win under their belt. Even though the season recently began just a few short weeks ago, the team is now in full swing ready to take on Providence College in Friday’s match, set to start at 1 p.m.