TCU’s women’s tennis dropped at 5-2 decision to No. 36 SMU at Turpin Tennis Stadium.
During doubles play, TCU’s No. 3 singles player sophomore Federica Denti crumpled to the court with an ankle injury forcing a stoppage to the No. 1 doubles match. The Horned Frogs were also without the services of junior Shalini Sahoo at No. 6 singles, who suffered a leg injury last Saturday against Utah.
“It was kind of a shock for the girls when Denti went down,” TCU coach Dave Borelli said. “Playing without her and Sahoo against a team like SMU was really tough and I thought we still competed really hard. The silver lining for us was Maria Babanova and Olivia Smith winning their matches. That will get them a lot of confidence and we’re going to need them playing well down the stretch of the season.”
Babanova joined Hertzberg to pick up the win at No. 3 doubles for the Frogs, before going to the singles courts. SMU’s win at No. 2 doubles, along with the retirement of TCU’s No. 1 doubles clinched the doubles point for the Mustangs.
In singles, with the lineup shifted up because of Denti’s injury, Smith picked up a 2-6, 6-3, 6-3 win over SMU’s Heather Steinbauer at No. 3 singles. The Bath, England, native improved to 9-6.
TCU’s other point came from Babanova, who was a 6-3, 6-2 winner over Shahzoda Hatamova at No. 5 singles. The Moscow, Russia, native has won two matches in a row in singles and is 2-3 this spring.
With the win, the Mustangs improved to 16-4 on the season, while TCU dropped to 7-8. The Frogs return to action Saturday with a trip to Albuquerque, N.M., to take on UNLV.
1. No. 9 Marta Lesniak (SMU) def. Katariina Tuohimaa (TCU) 6-1, 7-6 (7-3)
2. Edyta Cieplucha (SMU) def. Gaby Mastromarino (TCU) 6-4, 6-1
3. Olivia Smith (TCU) def. Heather Steinbauer (SMU) 2-6, 6-3, 6-3
4. No. 117 Aleksandra Malyarchikova (SMU) def. Idunn Hertzberg (TCU) 6-2, 6-3
5. Maria Babanova (TCU) def. Shahzoda Hatamova (SMU) 6-3, 6-2
6. Kris Roberts (SMU) def. Molly Welsh (TCU) 6-1, 6-1
Order of Finish: 6, 2, 4*, 5, 1, 3
1. No. 42 Lesniak/Malyarchikova (SMU) def. Tuohimaa/Denti (TCU) 5-2, ret.
2. Cieplucha/Steinbauer (SMU) def. Smith/Mastromarino (TCU) 8-2
3. Babanova/Hertzberg (TCU) def. Roberts/Hatamova (SMU) 8-4
Order of Finsh: 1, 2*, 3