|Women's tennis opens strong|
PULLMAN, Wash. - The Idaho women's tennis had a strong showing in its first collegiate tournament of the fall, as Vandal players won the Flight 2 singles championship and the Flight 1 doubles championship, and had a runner-up finish in Flight 3 singles.
"Overall there are lots of positives to take out of this tournament," second-year head coach Dan Pollock said. "The team got lots of valuable match practice and competed very well. The girls should take confidence from the results that they achieved to start out the year on a successful note against a lot of very strong competition."
Junior Almudena Sanz went 5-0 in singles to take home the Flight 2 title, while junior Victoria Lozano teamed up with freshman Rita Bermudez to go 5-0 and win the top doubles flight. Senior Constance Alexander went 4-1 in Flight 3 singles play, advancing to the championship match before falling. In all, Idaho players combined to go 29-8 in the tournament, including 20-5 in singles and 9-3 in doubles.
"I'm really happy with the way we competed this weekend" Pollock said. "At times we didn't play the most perfect tennis and there are still a lot of things that we have to improve, but the girls showed a lot of match toughness against some very strong opposition and showed a level of hunger and competitiveness that is a very good sign moving forward."
Among Lozano and Bermudez's five doubles wins were victories over the top two doubles pairings from Washington State, a top-30 team that advanced in the NCAA tournament in the spring. Sanz and Flores went 2-2 in doubles and advanced to the quarterfinals, while Alejandra Lozano played with a Montana player and advanced to the round of 16.
"Prior to Wednesday last week we had only been conducting individual workouts, so our doubles teams were pretty much learning how to play together as they went along," Pollock said. "To come up with such strong performances after only 2 team practices, especially with Vicky and Rita, is a great achievement.
The Vandals continue play Sept. 28-30 when they head to Boise, Idaho for the Jack Taylor Invitational, the second of five tournaments on their fall schedule.
"We still have a lot of areas that we can improve as we move through our fall practice progression, and I hope we will keep getting better throughout the fall individual season in preparation for our team season in spring," Pollock said.
Flight 1 Singles
Beatriz Flores (3-1, R16)
Flight 2 Singles
Rita Bermudez (3-1, R16)
Flight 3 Singles
Alejandra Lozano (3-1, SF)
Flight 1 Doubles
Sanz/Flores (2-2, QF)
Flight 2 Doubles