Women’s tennis excels at home, struggles in conference play

Mark Keplinger, Sports Editor

Since beginning conference play against the Tulsa Golden Hurricane on Feb. 11, Tulane women’s tennis has gone 1-3 within the conference and 4-4 overall. The Green Wave now sit eighth out of 11 teams in the American Athletic Conference with a 7-6 overall record.

The Green Wave has an excellent 6-2 record at home but struggles immensely on the road. The team has dropped their last three contests.

Two matches have been canceled, following a familiar trend from early in the season. Matchups against the Wichita State Shockers on Feb. 13 and against LSU on Feb. 23 were canceled due to injuries in the opposing camp.

The Green Wave had a poor start to AAC play when Tulsa dominated Tulane 6-1. The Golden Hurricane won all three doubles matches and outmatched the Green Wave in most singles matches. Lahari Yelamanchili won Tulane’s only match of the day, while Mackenzie Clark had a close loss against the 94th-ranked Laia Conde Monfort.

On Feb. 18, Tulane rebounded with a dominant 7-0 win over the Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks, by winning every match in both doubles and singles action. Adelaide Lavery and Kristen Borland had impressive victories while Yelamanchili’s win secured the overall match for the Green Wave.

Two days later, the 13th-ranked Auburn Tigers beat Tulane 2-5. Tulane’s top doubles pair of Yelamanchili and Charlotte Russell defeated No. 48 pairing Selin Ovunc and Ariana Arseneault 6-4. In singles play, Arseneault, ranked No. 116 in singles play, rebounded with a 6-4, 6-4 win over Yelamanchili, but Auburn’s Carolyn Ansari, ranked No. 125, lost to Tulane’s Clark. Auburn, however, dominated the bottom half of singles matches, with matchups four through seven all going to the Tigers.

The Green Wave rattled off three straight dominant wins by sweeping the Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns, the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders and the South Florida Bulls. Tulane lost only one match in all three contests, which was the number three doubles match against ULL.

However, Tulane would then go on to lose three straight against the SMU Mustangs, the Houston Cougars and the Rice Owls

On March 15 against No. 54 SMU, Russell and Yelamanchili won Tulane’s only doubles victory, and it was the same two who got Tulane’s only singles wins as well. Tulane went on to lose 5-2.

Four days later, the Cougars won 4-2 against Tulane. Top Cougars pair Azul Pedemonti and Blanca Cortijo Parreno started the day by sweeping Russell and Yelamanchili before taking the doubles point with a 7-5 win in the three pair spot. Despite splitting the six singles matches evenly, Houston’s point in doubles handed them the overall match.

On March 20, No. 47 Rice Owls swept Tulane 4-0 despite four unfinished matches. In the matches that were completed, the Owls dominated the Green Wave including winning both completed doubles matches 6-1.

Tulane will be hoping to reverse their skid with a three-game homestand, starting with the  Nicholls State Colonels and the New Orleans Privateers on March 23, before facing the North Texas Mean Green on March 26.

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