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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Young W-tennis players improve

The Arizona women’s tennis team took to the courts this weekend in San Diego at the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Southwest Regionals and showed much improvement across the board.

The Wildcats were led by sophomore Natasha Marks, who won four matches, including a tough battle in the quarterfinals against ASU’s Micaela Hein (7-5, 5-7, 6-2) to earn a spot in the tournament’s semifinal round. Marks was defeated by Yasmin Schnack from UCLA 6-4, 6-1 in the semifinals, but despite the loss, head coach Vicky Maes was pleased with the sophomore’s performance.

“”I was extremely happy with Natasha’s showing both in singles and doubles,”” Maes said. “”She continues to make progress as she is committed to venturing out of her comfort zone.””

Marks was paired with senior Claire Rietsch in the doubles draw, where they defeated three other tandems en route to a semifinal appearance. UCLA’s Schnack and Andrea Remynse eliminated the Wildcat duo Sunday on their way to the doubles title.

Elsewhere in the tournament, senior Ariane Masschelein, sophomore Sarah Landsman and freshman Elizabeth Hammond all won matches in the singles bracket.

Making her Wildcat debut, Hammond defeated Tara Panu from Pepperdine 6-4, 6-2 in the round of 64 before losing her match in the next round.

“”I was especially pleased to see Elizabeth come up with a win,”” Maes said. “”She is a very hardworking player.””

Landsman was able to win two matches to make it to the round of 16, but was unable to defeat Schnack in a very close match, losing 7-6, 7-6.

Sophomore Debora Castany and junior Jane Huh were unable to win their doubles match at the tournament. However, after losing in the singles main draw, Huh responded by winning a match in the consolation bracket before ultimately being defeated in the next round.

The Wildcats’ success was scattered over the weekend, and although both Maes and assistant coach Ryan Stotland saw some things they liked from their team, they also saw some areas where the team could improve.

“”The goal is to get better, and I think most of us got better,”” Stotland explained. “”We won some, we lost some and you can’t win them all. But overall, I think this is a good tool for us moving forward, and it’s something we can build on in the future.””

“”We had ups and downs in terms of results, but we felt good about the effort and the learning process,”” Maes added.

One thing to take away from this tournament was the camaraderie that Maes saw develop over the weekend as the team becomes a more cohesive unit with each tournament.

“”The tournament in San Diego was a great experience for everyone,”” Maes said. “”On our first trip as a team, it was great to see that the chemistry is strong.””

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