Women's Tennis
UK Women’s Tennis Defeats Penn State, WKU in Sunday Doubleheader

UK Women’s Tennis Defeats Penn State, WKU in Sunday Doubleheader

by Chandler Brandes

LEXINGTON, Ky. – The Kentucky women’s tennis team picked up another pair of victories on Sunday at the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Center, first defeating Penn State in a come-from-behind 4-3 effort before sweeping Western Kentucky, 4-0.

Following their back-to-back wins, the Wildcats begin the season with an 8-0 record for the second year in a row. The Nittany Lions fall to 4-4 while the Lady Toppers drop to 5-2.

Kentucky lost the doubles point for just the second time this season in the first match of the day against Penn State. The duo of Carlota Molina and Lidia Gonzalez evened things up, but Sofiya Chekhlystova and Gabby O’Gorman prevailed in a tough 7-5 battle with Fiona Arrese and Florencia Urrutia to give the Nittany Lions a one-point advantage heading into singles.   

After trailing Penn State by three following the completion of the first two singles matches, the comeback Cats showed their resiliency by claiming a hard-fought four straight points to win the match. 

Playing on the fourth court, Urrutia defeated Alexandra Nielsen 6-3, 1-6, 6-1 for UK’s first point of the match to begin chipping away at the deficit. The Wildcats then got within one of the Nittany Lions after Arrese bested O’Gorman 6-3, 1-6, 7-6(4) in a tiebreaker decision on court three.

Just as they did in the season opener, Kentucky’s two freshmen once again showed up big when it mattered most. Ellie Eades tied the match at three apiece in the fifth position, topping Alina Lebedeva 7-6(4), 6-2. Moments later, Gonzalez earned the second clinching point of her Wildcat career after taking down Karly Friedland 6-3, 7-5 on court six to seal the match for UK.

Kentucky carried the momentum from the first match into match two, handily securing the doubles point against Western Kentucky. Molina and Gonzalez teamed up to beat Sofia Blanco and Mariana Zegada, 6-1, on court three before Carla Girbau and Eades took down Samantha Martinez and Laura Bernardos, 6-2, on the second court.

Arrese won her second singles match of the day, moving to 7-1 on the season after posting a 6-2, 6-1 decision over Taylor Shaw in the third spot. Urrutia also won her match against Rachel Hermanova 6-4, 6-1 on court four while extending her unblemished singles record to 7-0 on the year.

Girbau gave the Wildcats the sweep over their in-state foe after defeating Bernados in a 6-2, 6-2 outcome on the second court. The win marked her first individual clinch of the season. 

Kentucky continues its challenging stretch of six home matches in seven days on Tuesday, Feb. 15 when Indiana comes to the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Center at 11 a.m. ET.  Tuesday was originally slated to be a doubleheader with Bellarmine, but the match against the Knights has been rescheduled to Friday, March 11 at 4 p.m.

Match One
Kentucky 4, Penn State 3

1. Sofiya Chekhlystova (Penn State) def. Carlota Molina (UK) 6-0, 6-3
2. Yvonne Zuffova (Penn State) def. Carla Girbau (UK) 6-2, 6-3
3. Fiona Arrese (UK) def. Gabby O’Gorman (Penn State) 6-3, 1-6, 7-6(4)
4. Florencia Urrutia (UK) def. Alexandra Nielsen (Penn State) 6-3, 1-6, 6-1
5. Lidia Gonzalez (UK) def. Karly Friedland (Penn State) 6-3, 7-5
6. Ellie Eades (UK) def. Alina Lebedeva (Penn State) 7-6(4), 6-2
Order of finish: 1, 2, 4, 3, 6, 5*

1. Sofiya Chekhlystova/Yvonne Zuffova (Penn State) def. Fiona Arrese/Florencia Urrutia (UK) 7-5
2. Olivia Ryan/Yvonne Zuffova (Penn State) def. Ellie Eades/Carla Girbau (UK) 6-2
3. Carlota Molina/Lidia Gonzalez (UK) def. Alexandra Nielsen/Karly Friedland (Penn State) 6-4
Order of finish: 2, 3, 1*

Match Two
Kentucky 4, Western Kentucky 0

1. Carlota Molina (UK) vs. Cora-Lynn Dungern (WKU) Unfinished
2. Carla Girbau (UK) def. Laura Bernardos (WKU) 6-2, 6-2
3. Fiona Arrese (UK) def. Taylor Shaw (WKU) 6-2, 6-1
4. Florencia Urrutia (UK) def. Rachel Hermanova (WKU) 6-4, 6-1
5. Lidia Gonzalez (UK) vs. Alexis Cramer (WKU) Unfinished
6. Maialen Morante (UK) vs. Sofia Blanco (WKU) Unfinished 
Order of finish: 3, 4, 2*

1. Fiona Arrese/Florencia Urrutia (UK) vs. Cora-Lynn Dungern/Paola Cortez (WKU) Unfinished
2. Carla Girbau/Ellie Eades (UK) def. Samantha Martinez/Laura Bernardos (WKU) 6-2
3. Carlota Molina/Lidia Gonzalez (UK) def. Sofia Blanco/Mariana Zegada (WKU) 6-1
Order of finish: 3, 1*

For the latest on the Kentucky women’s tennis program, follow @UKWomensTennis on Twitter and Instagram, on Facebook, and on the web at UKathletics.com.

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