Tennis: OU and OSU Compete At OU Invite

Saturday, September 26th 2015, 10:12 pm
By: Brett Coppenbarger

We are two days into the OU Invite, and both the Sooners and Cowgirls have seen success so far. 

Sooners Pick Up Four Wins

The Oklahoma women’s tennis team finished day two of the OU Invite, completing two rounds of singles play with the Sooners picking up four wins.

Sophomore Christie Brigante earned the Sooners’ second win of the day over Tulsa’s Yelena Nemchen. Brigante dropped the first set, but battled back to win the second and third sets to take the match, 1-6, 6-3, 6-2.

“In that first set, (Brigante) wasn’t getting points started,” head coach Dave Mullins said. “She lost so many returns, so many quick points, so she couldn’t really gain any momentum. Once she had the first points started, even in the first set, she was winning the majority of those points. She settled down on her returns and then once she got the point started, she was the better player. That little switch helped her gain the momentum she needed.”

Mimi Fotopoulos showed promise again today, taking Tulsa’s Rongrong Leenabanchong to a long two sets before falling 6-2, 7-5.

Fotopoulos and Brigante will start Sunday in the semifinals of the Crimson doubles draw. The pair won their first round match against North Texas’s Anastasiya Shestakova and Agustina Valenzuela, 6-3, on Friday. The quarterfinal win of 6-2 over Wichita State’s Rebecca Pedrazzi and Aleksandra Trifunovic put them in line to face Caroline Wegner and Seda Arantekin of TCU in the semifinals.

“I was really happy with their doubles yesterday and their decision-making and energy as a team,” Mullins said. “They’ve picked up where they left off at the end of last semester. We had four freshmen last year and they’re not really taught doubles in juniors, so we had a lot of teaching to do. But they know what’s required now, so win or lose, I expect to see some pretty good things.”

Along with Fotopoulos/Brigante, sophomores Malene Stripp and Brooke Winthrow will compete in the semifinals of the Red doubles draw. After a bye in the first round, the tandem beat Abby Stevens and Tanaporn Thongsing of Wichita State, 6-0, in quarterfinals.

Despite a quarterfinal loss on Friday, sophomore Simran Sethi and senior Emma Devine, will take on Gabriela Talaba and Sabrina Federici of Texas Tech in the quarterfinal consolation bracket.

The semifinal round of doubles begins Sunday at 9 a.m., followed by the championship round of doubles and singles.

Muri Impresses For Cowgirls 

Oklahoma State women’s tennis squad continued its streak of impressive performances on Saturday.

Carla Tur Mari continued play in the OU Invitational. Tur Mari opened Saturday in the quarterfinals of the Sooner Draw; Tur Mari took on Nini Khmelnitckaia of Kansas in her first match of the day. Tur Mari dropped the match in straight sets, 6-1, 6-3.

Tur Mari battled back to win her second match of the day against Sabrina Federici of Texas Tech. Tur Mari captured in the win in straight sets, 6-3, 6-2.

The Cowgirls also continued an impressive run at the Country Club of Little Rock Invitational. The morning session featured the duo of Katarina Adamovic and Vladica Babic earning an impressive, 6-1, doubles victory against Arkansas. Kelsey Laurente and Maria Alvarez also picked up a doubles victory, defeating Ole Miss, 6-3.

Babic also earned a singles victory to add to her total this weekend. The Cowgirl junior defeated Tea Jandric of Ole Miss in straight sets, 7-6, 6-3.

The Cowgirls have won 13 of 16 matches through two days of competition.