Mean Green Tennis Drops 6-1 Decision To Wichita State
North Texas Picks Up First Singles Win In Three Matches
WICHITA, Ks. — The North Texas tennis team was unable to pull an upset against its first ranked opponent of the year, falling to No. 34 Wichita State in a 6-1 decision on Sunday from the Wichita Country Club. The loss drops the Mean Green to 1-4 on the season.
“We faced a very experienced squad today that did not give us many openings in doubles,” head coach Sujay Lama said. “However, we did put up a fight in singles resulting in a nice win for Tamuna [Kutubidze] and a couple of matches that went to three sets.”
The highlight for North Texas’s day came at the No. 2 singles spot, where freshman Tamuna Kutubidze picked up the team’s first singles win in three matches. The Tbilisi, Georgia, native had a close-knit fight with Shocker Julia Schiller before coming away with a 7-6, 7-5 win in the battle.
In other singles action, two matches required three sets to determine a winner. At the No. 1 position, freshman Maria Kononova got out to a hot start against No. 71 Gabriela Porubin by taking a 6-4 win in set one, but Porubin battled back to take the next two in a 4-6, 6-1, 6-2 loss for one of the Mean Green’s top freshman. The remaining three-set marathon came from senior Anastasiya Shestakova, who fell to Aleks Trifunovic in a 5-7, 6-1, 6-2 result.
In doubles, the Mean Green wasn’t able to build off of competitive matches against Kansas on Saturday, as North Texas failed to pick up a duo win.
At the No. 1 spot, freshmen Kononova and Kutubidze fell to Porubin and Julia Schiller by a 6-3 score. Likewise, the No. 3 team of seniors Shestakova and Agustina Valenzuela dropped a 6-4 decision to Luca Pump and Giulla Guidetti. Junior Alexis Thoma and freshman Minying Liang trailed the Shockers, 5-2, before their match went unfinished at the No. 2 position.
While the Mean Green have now lost four straight matches, Lama continues to see these early season tests as part of the process.
“We are growing and evolving as a team,” Lama said. “The pieces are there and these matches are invaluable to our growth. We just need to stay positive and keep working and enjoying the process.”
North Texas will be back in action next weekend with a Conference USA dual match from Denton. The Mean Green will face off with Louisiana Tech at 12 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 13, from the Waranch Tennis Complex.
• No. 1 Maria Kononova falls to #71 Gabriela Porubin; 4-6, 6-1, 6-2
• No. 2 Tamuna Kutubidze def. Julia Schiller; 7-6, 7-5
• No. 3 Alexis Thoma falls to Rebecca Pedrazzi; 6-0, 6-2
• No. 4 Anastasiya Shestakova falls to Aleks Trifunovic; 5-7, 6-1, 6-2
• No. 5 Minying Liang falls to Giulia Guidetti; 6-2, 6-1
• No. 6 Kamilla Galieva falls to Abby Stevens; 6-4, 6-2
• No. 1 Kononova/Kutubidze fall to Porubin/Schiller, 6-3
• No. 2 Liang/Thoma vs. Pedrazzi/Trifunovic, 2-5 (unfinished)
• No. 3 Shestakova/Valenzuela fall to Pump/Guidetti, 6-4