The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

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The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

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Women’s Tennis falls in C-USA semifinals

Yana+Erkeeva+returning+a+volley+against+Rice+in+the+Conference+USA+championship+semifinal+on+April+20.
Courtesy of SMU Athletics
Yana Erkeeva returning a volley against Rice in the Conference USA championship semifinal on April 20.

Yana Erkeeva returning a volley against Rice in the Conference USA championship semifinal on April 20. (Courtesy of SMU Athletics)

SMU women’s tennis, No.51, wrapped their season up this weekend in the semifinals of the Conference USA Championship against No.20 Rice, falling 4-1 in Houston on Saturday.

“We put up a fight today, but Rice was too tough,” Kati Gyulai, head coach, said. “We played with the lead in doubles and won five first sets, but this is not a one set contest. Congratulations to Rice.”

Rice came out strong taking the early doubles point. No. 3 doubles Edyta Cieplucha and Elena Fayner won 8-6, moving Cieplucha to seventh at SMU, with 72 career doubles victories.
The Mustangs won the first of six singles matchups with Yana Erkeeva’s 6-3, 6-4 sweep against Solomiya Zinko.

The championship opened with SMU’s 4-0 sweep against UTEP on Thursday. The Mustangs earned set victories at No. 1, No. 2, No.3, and No. 5 singles then advanced to the quarterfinals against No. 46 Tulane on Friday.

“We are happy to advance in the tournament,” Gyulai said. “The conditions were very difficult, but we played disciplined. Every line fought for every point.”

Aleksandra Malyarchikova moved to sixth in wins at SMU and second in career winning percentage after her 6-2, 6-2 win at No. 1 singles, bringing her to 86-15 (851.) for her career.
Freshmen Vaszilisza Bulgakova and Hristina Dishkova both earned points for the Mustangs at No. 3 and No. 5 singles.

The Mustangs advanced to take on No. 46 Tulane for the quarterfinals of the Conference USA Championship with a 4-2 victory on Friday.

“It feels great to advance,” Gyulai said. “Our problem solving skills were excellent in the outdoor conditions. Every single line gave us their best fight today and contributed. It was a fantastic job playing as a team.”

The Mustangs took the first point with No. 66 Malyarchikova and Bulgakova’s 9-7 win at No. 1 doubles followed by Cieplucha and Fayner’s 8-3 victory on the No. 3 line.

This marked Malyarchikova’s 77th doubles win, moving her to third in SMU history.

Tulane then won at No. 3 and No. 6 bringing Dishkova in to clinch the No. 5 line with a three-set win. She came out strong after losing the first set for a 4-6, 6-2, 6-3 victory sending SMU to the semifinals against Rice.

The Mustangs will lose two seniors next season, Malyarchikova and Cieplucha.

“They will leave our program as SMU graduates; as Conference USA Champions; NCAA Sweet 16 participants; with national ranking in team singles and doubles; and in the top 10 for career singles and doubles wins,” Gyulai said. “They are
Mustangs forever.” 

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