April 13, 2014
The Rice women's tennis team shunned the threat of rain and the effects an emotional pre match ceremony recognizing a pair of seniors who have been the backbone of the program's rise into the top 25 to draw down the curtain on Jake Hess Tennis Stadium with a 5-1 win over UTSA on Sunday afternoon.
The Owls (14-5) won five of six singles matches, all in straight sets to wi for the eighth time in the last nine matches and improve to 2-1 in Conference USA action heading into next weekend's conference championship tournament which will be hosted by Old Dominion University. As a likely top four seed, the Owls will receive a double bye and open play in the quarterfinal round on Friday.
With the potential of rain, the match order was reversed with singles played first. Junior Natalie Beazant snapped a six-match winless streak by racing to an impressive 6-0, 6-0 win over Jacobea Junger to give the Owls a quick 1-0 lead. Sophomore Solomiya Zinko followed with a similar win on court six to push the lead to 2-0.
Senior Kimberly Anicete followed with a 6-2, 6-2 win over Nicole Karaklis on court four, the 96th of her career to allow her to move into sole possession of fifth on the Rice career win list and move Rice within a point of the clinch.
Freshman Katherine Ip delivered the clincher while improving her dual mark to 13-4 with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Isabelle Jonsson and fellow freshman Alison Ho closed out the Rice scoring with her ninth consecutive win, 7-5, 6-3 over Lina Hallgren.
UTSA's Miriam Canudas foiled Rice's hopes for a shutout by snapping Dominique Harmath's 11-match winning streak with a 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 win on court two to bring the match to a close.
The dual match was the final schedule collegiate action at Jake Hess Tennis Stadium, which has served as the home of Rice Tennis since 1970. The Owls are scheduled to move into the George R Brown Tennis Center on the Rice campus for the start of the 2014-15 season.
Tennis Match Results
UTSA vs Rice
4/13/2014 at Houston, TX
(Jake Hess Tennis Stadium)
#21 Rice 5, UTSA 1
1. #103 Natalie Beazant (RICE) def. Jacobea Junger (UTSA) 6-0, 6-0
2. Miriam Canudas (UTSA) def. #109 Dominique Harmath (RICE) 6-4, 1-6, 6-4
3. #82 Katherine Ip (RICE) def. Isabelle Jonsson (UTSA) 6-3, 6-2
4. Kimberly Anicete (RICE) def. Nicole Karaklis (UTSA) 6-2, 6-2
5. Alison Ho (RICE) def. Lina Hallgren (UTSA) 7-5, 6-3
6. Solomiya Zinko (RICE) def. Irene Gonzalez (UTSA) 6-0, 6-0
UTSA 11-10 (2-3) Rice 14-5 (2-1); National ranking #21
Order of finish: Doubles (); Singles (1,6,4,3,5,2)
Final Match at Jake Hess Tennis Stadium