Women's Tennis
Women’s Tennis Faces First Defeat Against No. 1 North Carolina

Women’s Tennis Faces First Defeat Against No. 1 North Carolina

CHAPEL HILL, N.C., – Kentucky Women’s Tennis (4-1) faced its first defeat of the season against host No. 1 UNC (6-0), 4-0, at Cone-Kenfield Indoor Tennis Center in the final round of the 15th annual ITA Kickoff Weekend.

The top-seeded Tar Heels swept the previously undefeated Wildcats to advance to Seattle, Wash. for the 2024 ITA Division I Women’s Indoor Championships held February 9-12.

No. 3 Kentucky entered the final round of the weekend following a semifinal 4-3 comeback victory over two-seeded Charlotte. Despite dropping the doubles point and falling behind 3-2, the Wildcats claimed points at each of the bottom four singles spots to earn the victory.

North Carolina came into the match following a victory of its own over No. 4 Oregon, 4-0.

In doubles action, the No. 1 ranked pair of Reese Brantmeier and Elizabeth Scotty defeated Kentucky’s No. 36 ranked duo Elizabeth Stevens and Makayla Mills, 6-1, on Court 1. The point was claimed by the Tar Heels as Zoe Hammond and Julia Zhu were overcome on Court 3 by No. 11 Reilly Tran and Abbey Forbes. In a near-even matchup, UK’s top-ranked tandem of No. 25 Ellie Eades and Lidia Gonzalez were down 3-5 against No. 23 Fiona Crawley and Carson Tanguilig before the match was left unfinished.

Entering singles play in a one-point deficit, the Cats looked to find redemption as they began their individual matches. Five of Carolina’s six starting singles were nationally ranked in the top-50 with two Tar Heels ranked in the top-10.

Courts 5 and 2 were the first to finish back-to-back as freshman Zhu fell to No. 41 ranked Forbes, 1-6, 2-6. She was followed by Eades who fell to Crawley, 3-6, 1-6. The clinching point was decided as Court 6 finished with sophomore Ellie Myers falling to No. 32 Rabman, 3-6, 0-6.

In the matches left unfinished, Court 1 saw Stevens fighting for a second set win against No. 9 Brantmeier. The UNC sophomore was victorious 6-4 in the first set but was tied 5-5 before the match was abandoned. Junior Gonzalez was on her way to equalizing her match on Court 3 against No. 9 Yarlagadda despite falling in set one, 3-6. She was up 4-2 before the second round of weekend competition saw its end. The final Wildcat left unfinished was Hammond who was holding a battle against No. 44 Scotty on Court 4. The Kentucky sophomore claimed the first set following a tough, yet successful, tiebreaker, 7(7)-6(3). However, the match was decided as she was down 0-1 in the second set of play.

The Wildcats will set their sights on next weekend where they will travel to Columbia (Feb. 2) and Princeton (Feb. 4). Big Blue Nation can catch the Cats back at home Feb. 9 against Wichita State for an 11 a.m. ET contest at the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Center.


#1 North Carolina 4, Kentucky 0


#1 Reese Brantmeier/Elizabeth Scotty (NC) def. #36 Elizabeth Stevens/Makayla Mills (UK) 6-1

#23 Fiona Crawley/Carson Tanguilig (NC) vs. #25 Ellie Eades/Lidia Gonzalez (UK) 5-3, unfinished

#11 Reilly Tran/Abbey Forbes (NC) def. Zoe Hammond/Julia Zhu (UK) 6-2


#5 Reese Brantmeier (NC) vs. Elizabeth Stevens (UK) 6-4, 5-5, unfinished

Fiona Crawley (NC) def. Ellie Eades (UK) 6-3, 6-1

#9 Anika Yarlagadda (NC) vs. Lidia Gonzalez (UK) 6-3, 2-4, unfinished

#44 Elizabeth Scotty (NC) vs. Zoe Hammond (UK) 6-7 (3-7), 1-0, unfinished

#41 Abbey Forbes (NC) def. Julia Zhu (UK) 6-1, 6-2

#32 Thea Rabman (NC) def. Ellie Myers (UK) 6-3, 6-0

Match Notes:

Kentucky 4-1

North Carolina 6-0; National ranking #1

Order of finish: Doubles (1,3); Singles (5,2,6)

For the latest on UK Women’s Tennis, follow @UKWomensTennis on Instagram, Facebook and X (formerly Twitter).

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