So far in the tournaments the BYU women’s tennis team has participated in, homecourt advantage has paid off. BYU players owned the BYU Invitational with an all blue semifinals, Cal Berkeley dominated the Cal Nike Invitational with an all gold semifinal, and now UNLV will take home the TIA Mountain Region Championship after an all red final.
Even though UNLV cleaned house in the singles bracket, BYU players had great runs in both singles and doubles. They won five matches in singles and five matches in doubles in the main draw.
“The tournament went all right,” BYU women’s tennis coach Lauren Jones-Spencer said in a news release. “We had a few girls stand out and got some good practice matches in. But we have room to improve and are going to get to work in practice.”
The eight-member team, including three freshmen and two sophomores, showed it could compete with the best players in the region, pushing four players past the first round in singles. Of those four, two players, freshman Morgan Anderson and sophomore Desiree Tran, advanced to the third round. Anderson defeated Ghizelle Doballah from Northern Arizona, 6-3, 6-1, and Tran defeated Molly Knox from Idaho, 6-4, 6-3.
In the second round Anderson and Tran defeated their opponents Gabriella Boboc from Denver, 6-4, 6-4 and Heather Davidson from Montana, 7-6, 5-7, 7-5.
Anderson’s and Tran’s success ended in the third round. Anderson fell to instate rival Utah’s Anastasia Putilina 6-4. Putilina, the No. 1 seed, advanced to the semifinals, ultimately losing to UNLV’s Aleksandra Josifoska, 6-3, 6-1. Tran fell to No. 4 seed Michelle Okhremchuk of Nevada, 6-1, 6-0.
In doubles, two of the four teams pushed through the first and second rounds and one advanced to the third.
Senior Megan Price and freshman Meghan Sheehan-Dizon held out the longest for the Cougars, ending their run with a loss in the quarterfinal match against the No. 3 ranked doubles team of Veronica Popovici and Simona Synkova of Wyoming, 8-1.
The pair from Wyoming also beat BYU’s Morgan Anderson and Aubrey Paul in the final 16.