Doubleheader pushes Rams’ win streak to 6

Sophomore Paola Exposito Diaz-Delgado was named A-10 Player of the Week two weeks in a row. Photo by Gessler Santos-Lopez

Nile McNair, Contributing Writer

Riding a four-game winning streak, Women’s Tennis entered the weekend’s doubleheader looking to continue recent momentum.

Temple

The Rams faced Temple Feb. 24, taking down the Owls 7-0 in the second half of their weekend doubleheader.

A month of strong performances continued against Temple on Sunday, as the women started with a doubles clean sweep.

The duo of senior Anna Rasmussen and sophomore Melissa Ifidzhen were the first to finish, winning their doubles match 6-3.

The Rams also impressed in singles — sophomore Kanako Yano won her first set 6-0 and followed it up with a 6-1 victory to secure the match.

The remainder of the Rams won their respective singles matches as VCU swept Temple.

Coach Paul Kostin said he knew the Owls were a strong team.

“We played very well today because we knew this team was dangerous,” Kostin said. “So, I’m happy with the win.”

The win over temple brought the Rams’ winning streak to six.

“It’s good for [the team] but I don’t keep track of those kind of things,” Kostin said of the winning streak. “We need to get better so we play our best at the most important times.”

Elon

The Rams opened up strong in doubles against Elon Feb. 23.

The tandem of Rasmussen and Ifidzhen had an impressive 6-0 victory over their doubles counterparts.

To ensure doubles victories, junior Noumea Witmus and sophomore Sofia Sualehe won 6-4 in a competitive one-set match.

Moving forward to singles matches, VCU continued to dominate. The Rams managed to win five of the six singles matches on Saturday.

Sophomore Paola Exposito Diaz-Delgado was named Atlantic 10 Player of the Week for the past two weeks — she lived up to her accolade in her singles match.

Exposito Diaz-Delgado made quick work of her opponent, winning in two sets, 6-1, 6-1.  

Yano and sophomore Marina Alcaide Bakkari were two other standout performances. Both won their singles matches in two short sets.

Kostin was proud of his team’s performance and effort against Elon.

“I believe we played well, we played good tennis, and it’s good to see that we were focused and ready to play,” Kostin said.

The Rams beat Elon with a final score of 6-1.

VCU will be back on the courts March 2 at home against West Virginia at 10 a.m.

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