ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFKnights.com) – The No. 18 UCF women’s tennis team defeated the Yale Bulldogs by a score of 6-1 on Sunday afternoon. The Knights have been victorious in eight straight matches.
“I’m very pleased with the 6-1 win over Yale,” said head coach Bryan Koniecko, “They’re a good team that is getting better and better every year. It was nice to sneak out a doubles point, nice to get Valentina and Rebeka a win on court three for Valentina’s first win. It was also nice to see Sara step up and play a good third set tiebreaker to win her match.”
Doubles play began with Domenika Turkovic and Natalia Serrano taking court two over Raissa Lou and Caroline Dunleavy by a count of 6-2. Doubles court one fell for the first time this season, as No. 22 Valeriya Zeleva and Ksenia Kuznetsova were edged by No. 52 Jessie Gong and Samantha Martinelli 6-3. The doubles point would come down to court three. Valentina Martin got her first taste of collegiate action as she was paired with Rebeka Stolmar. Together, the pair would defeat Caroline Amos and Kathy Wang 6-4 to secure the first point of the match.
The Knights would take the first singles point on court three as Stolmar downed Gong 6-0, 6-3. Shortly after, Serrano triumphed over Wang 6-3, 6-2 on court five to get UCF one away from the clincher.
Kuznetsova would clinch the match on court two by a count of 6-1, 6-3 over Dunleavy. The reigning American Athletic Conference Player of the Week is now 7-2 at the second spot in the lineup.
No. 29 Zeleva would be the next to finish. She would defeat another ranked opponent, besting No. 123 Martinelli 6-4, 6-4. Zeleva picks up her tenth win on the 2019 campaign and now sits at a 6-2 record against ranked opponents.
Sara Culbertson would get a win at the number six spot in the lineup for the Knights. She would defeat Amy Yang 6-4 in the first set before falling 1-6 in set two. With the match already clinched, a ten-point tiebreaker was played. Culbertson got ahead early and never looked back, winning the tiebreaker 10-8.
The only blip on the radar for UCF was court four, where Turkovic was bested by Lou 7-6 (8-6), 6-2.
The Knights will face their second conference opponent on the season as Tulane visits the UCF Collegiate Tennis Center at the USTA National Campus. That match takes place Friday at 11 a.m.
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