by Chuck Pool (cpool@edu) -
Priya Niezgoda won her fourth consecutive singles match while Fernanda Astete won her third straight to spark the Rice women's tennis team to eight wins in nine matches to open the River Oaks Country Club Fall College Invitational on Friday.
The three-day event, which features teams from Houston, North Texas and Texas along with Rice in a round robin format in both singles and doubles, saw the Owls win five of six singles matches against the Cougars and all three doubles matches against the Mean Green.
Niezgoda defeated Sveva Massari of Houston in three sets (6-3, 3-6, 6-2) to improve to 8-2 in fall singles. Astete, who joined Niezgoda in winning flight titles at last weekend's Haunted Horned Frog Invitational at TCU, dispatched Houston's Tsveta Dimitrova, 6-3, 6-1 to improve to 4-1 this fall.
Play continues on Saturday at the River Oaks Country Club in Houston.
River Oaks Country Club Fall College Invitational
Fernanda Astete (Rice) def. Tsveta Dimitrova (Houston), 6-3, 6-1
Priya Niezgoda (Rice) def. Sveva Mazzari (Houston), 6-3, 3-6, 6-2
Lauren Alter (Houston) def. Michaela Haet (Rice), 6-4, 6-2
Anna Bowtell (Rice) def. Ana Glumac (Houston), 7-5, 7-5
Savannah Durkin (Rice) def. Dena Nicolaou (Houston), 7-5, 6-2
Sofie Moenster (Rice) def. Laura Bernardos (Houston), 6-3, 6-3
NIezgoda/Bowtell (Rice) def. Nidhi Surapaneni/Minying Liang (North Texas), 8-7 (5)
Astete/Haet (Rice) def. Sille Tranberg/Alexandra Heczey (North Texas), 8-4
Durkin/Moenester (Rice) def. Ivana Babic/Haruka Sasaki (North Texas), 8-3