By Reed A. Peterson
The BYU women”s tennis team hopes to do what it did last year at this same time — beat the University of Utah.
Last year the Cougars hammered the Utes, 8-1, and the Cougars hope for the same results this year.
BYU is coming off a road trip where it won two out of three matches. The Cougars” only loss was to the No. 1 team in the nation — the Stanford Cardinal.
Both Cougar victories were over Mountain West Conference foes, including defending champion UNLV, 4-3. The Cougars also defeated San Diego State, 4-3.
BYU has six singles players with winning records. One of those six players, Jodi Richardson, is ranked No. 37 in the nation.
Cougars Dominique Reynolds and Lu Oswald have also been playing particularly well. Both Reynolds and Oswald won two of their three matches over the weekend.
Despite the Cougars” great singles play, the key to the match against the Utes will be the doubles point.
“If we can get the doubles point, that will set the tone,” said head coach Craig Manning. “And hopefully, with the momentum, we can win three of the six singles matches.”
BYU has played solid doubles lately, winning the doubles point in its last two matches.
The Cougars also have the advantage of the No. 22 doubles team in the country — Jodi Richardson and Brooke Ferney.
The Cougars are currently ranked No. 33 with a 10-7 overall record and 5-0 record in the Mountain West Conference.
The University of Utah women”s tennis team is 4-10 on the season.
The Utes are coming off a two-loss weekend. Utah lost its second and third consecutive Mountain West Conference matches to put the team at 2-3 in the conference. The Utes dropped a 6-1 match to No. 60 UNLV and were swept by No. 54 San Diego State, 7-0.
The Utes only managed one point during the entire weekend. The point came when Friday Kareld beat Amy Hadziosmanovic at the No. 6 spot, 4-6, 7-5, 7-5.
Utah”s conference wins were against Colorado State and Air Force. The Utes” other two wins on the season were over Utah State and UC-Irvine. Utah has gone 3-3 during the last six matches.
The Utes” top three players, Irini Kotoglou, Cassie Kasteler and Linn Ronnberg, combine for a 15-36 record.
So as the Utes make the long journey down I-15 this weekend, BYU hopes to continue its strong play and again win the battle of the blue and red.