By Danielle Nelson
*This article is posted on The Temple News website.
Four lady Owls started play at the ITAs on Friday at the University of Virginia.
The first day of the ITAs had seniors Alicia Doms, Jordan Batey, Yana Marvina and freshman Anais Nussume on the court in the doubles main draw.
The longtime pair of Doms and Batey teamed up to take on Pittsburgh’s Audrey Ann Blakely and Kimmy Borza at UV’s Snyder tennis courts in the round of 64. The Owls were able to hold off the Panthers in an 8-6 decision, moving on to the next round on Saturday. The duo will square off against Cindy Chala and Yukako Noi of VCU.
Coach Steve Mauro is confident that Doms and Batey will continue their winning streak on Saturday.
“They are a good doubles team,” Mauro said. “They are probably one of the best doubles teams, so hopefully they will get through the next round.”
Mauro believes that the Owls have an advantage over VCU on Saturday.
“[Doms and Batey] have been playing together for a couple of years now,” Mauro said. “If they are on, they can beat a lot of teams in the country.”
In a close 8-7(6) match, the tandem of Marvina and Nussume were unable to squeeze past Oana Manole and Kaja Mrole from West Virginia, ending their hopes of advancing to the round 32.
Yana suffered her second loss on the day, as she tried to qualify for the singles main draw. Old Dominion’s Nika Khmolovska won in straight sets, 6-4, 7-5, sending Marvina to the consolation draw, where she faced Julia Casselbury. Marvina dropped the first set, 6-1, and could not bounce back losing the match to the same score of 6-1.
“Yana played two tough opponents from good schools so they were close matches,” Mauro said. “It is unfortunate that she drew tough opponents in her first round.”
Despite Marvina ending her fall season with three loses in one day, Mauro thinks Marvina will only improve.
“Yanna will get better and better as the year progresses,” Mauro said. “It is still early on, she will persevere and will get better. By the end of the year she will be one of the best players on our team. I am very confident.”
Doms and Batey will begin their singles play in the main draw, in addition to the continuation of their doubles match on Saturday. Doms will go head to head with Caryssa Peretz of Virginia. Batey faces Delaware’s Dorothy Safron at 2:30 p.m.
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