Tennis triumphs in straight sets over weekend

Photo by Jon Mirador

Women’s Tennis won two matches in a row Feb. 16-17, extending its winning streak to four matches. Men’s Tennis was victorious Feb. 17, winning its second match in a row.

Sophomore Marina Alcaide Bakkari won her singles match 6-1, 6-0 Feb. 17 against Howard. Photo by Jon Mirador

Women

Howard

VCU battled Howard Feb. 17, defeating the Bison 7-0.

The duo of senior Anna Rasmussen and sophomore Melissa Ifidzhen won their doubles match with a final score of 6-0.

The other two Rams’ doubles matches had the same result, finishing 6-0.

Sophomore Paola Exposito Diaz-Delgado continued her momentum from the past two weekends, securing a two-set victory in her singles match over Howard’s Yassmine Khiri.

Coach Paul Kostin said he knew the face-off against Howard would be the easier of the two matchups this weekend.

“You want to play as many matches as you can,” Kostin said. “I’ve known Howard’s coach for years, they’ve always been very competitive and I think my girls played good.”

The Rams are rolling this month as they are 4-0 in their February matches.

 

Liberty

Tennis faced off against Liberty Feb. 16 in its first of two home matches of the weekend.

Once again, the Rams showed room for improvement in the doubles matches. Liberty won two out of the three doubles matches.

The duo of sophomores Exposito Diaz-Delgado and Kanako Yano secured VCU the only doubles match of the day, winning the set with a final score of 6-3.

However, the Rams bounced back in a major way once singles matches began. In six total singles matches, VCU only lost one.

Sophomore Marina Alcaide Bakkari had one of the most dominant singles matches that day. In two sets, she won her match, 6-2, 6-1.

Junior Noumea Witmus joined Alcaide Bakkari’s victory, winning her singles match in just two short sets.

The more matches the Rams played, the more wins they piled up. VCU’s winning streak moved to three after defeating Liberty 5-2 at home.

Women’s Tennis will face off against Elon Feb. 23 at 11 a.m. and Temple Feb. 24 at 11 a.m.

 

Sophomore Rayne Stable won his singles match Feb. 17 over Howard’s Cole Gittens 6-1, 6-1. Photo by Jon Mirador

Men

Men’s Tennis rolled against Howard, sweeping the Bison in both doubles and singles Feb. 17.

“I think we played that match very seriously,” coach Anthony Rossi said. “We actually had good competition on some courts, even though we won on both singles and doubles.”

Freshman Stefan Petrovic and sophomore Timo Zgraggen kicked off the victories for VCU, with a 6-0 set win in the first doubles match.

The Rams won their other two doubles matches with scores of 6-4 and 6-1.

In all six of VCU’s singles matches, none went past two sets — the Rams won them all.

Junior Javier Amantegui had a standout performance, winning his singles match by shutting out his opponent in two straight sets. He won his singles with a final score of 6-0, 6-0.

In what was one of the best performances of the young season, VCU won comfortably with a final score of 7-0.

Men’s Tennis has a slight break in its upcoming schedule. The team doesn’t play for about two weeks.

“This is the only match we had in three weeks,” Rossi said. “So I think one of the things to work on is our focus and not give up free points during the match — and relax.”

 

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