Feb. 18, 2017
by Chuck Pool (firstname.lastname@example.org) -
The Rice women's tennis team improved to 5-2 on the year with their fourth win in their last five outings, dropping Sam Houston State 6-1 at the George R. Brown Tennis Center on Saturday afternoon.
Senior All-America Katherine Ip led a parade of five Owls to pick up straight set wins in singles as Rice downed Sam Houston for the 18th time in as many career dual meetings.
The match with the Bearkats was a late addition to the schedule, as the Owls original plans to travel to Tucson, Arizona this weekend to face the University of Arizona Wildcats was postponed because of expected heavy rains which where were predicted to hit the area today. That match has been rescheduled for March 24, but Rice head coach Elizabeth Schmidt said she was glad to be able to arrange a competition for this weekend.
"It was nice to get the team win today," Schmidt said. "Sam Houston made us work and our team stepped up to the task. I'm very glad we could get this match in today and appreciate SHSU coming in here and laying it all out there."
Rice remained unbeaten in doubles this season, but the Bearkats made extending the streak difficult, extending the match's first point to nearly an hour.
Ip and Savannah Durkin finished first, winning 6-2 on the third line, but the remaining matches were tied 5-5 late in the contest. Wendy Zhang and Priya Niezgoda were able to break with a 6-5 lead at the first line to clinch the point and run the Owls' mark to 7-0 this year in doubles.
In singles, Rice raced to wins in each of the six first sets and then saw Ip, Durkin and Alison Ho finish in rapid fashion to provide the clinching points of the day. Niezgoda and Zhang also picked up wins to provide the final margin of victory.
The Owls will be back on the GRBTC courts for a pair of matches next weekend, hosting C-USA foe UTSA on Friday at 1 p.m. and PAC 12 foe Colorado at 11 a.m. on Sunday.
Sam Houston State vs Rice
2/18/2017 at Houston, TX
(George R. Brown Tennis Center)
Rice 6, Sam Houston State 1
1. Wendy Zhang (RICE) def. Gettwart, Fabienne (SHSU) 6-4, 7-6 (7-3)
2. Katherine Ip (RICE) def. Barkovic, Ema (SHSU) 6-3, 6-0
3. Wee, Khee Yen (SHSU) def. Fernanda Astete (RICE) 3-6, 6-2, 1-0 (10-7)
4. Alison Ho (RICE) def. Casey, Carrie (SHSU) 6-4, 6-0
5. Savannah Durkin (RICE) def. Milanovic, Mila (SHSU) 6-1, 6-4
6. Priya Niezgoda (RICE) def. Friedrichs, Diane (SHSU) 6-2, 6-4
1. Wendy Zhang/Priya Niezgoda (RICE) def. Milanovic, Mila/Casey, Carrie (SHSU) 7-5
2. Gettwart, Fabienne/Wee, Khee Yen (SHSU) def. Fernanda Astete/Alison Ho (RICE) 7-6 (7-2)
3. Katherine Ip/Savannah Durkin (RICE) def. Barkovic, Ema/Friedrichs, Diane (SHSU) 6-2
Sam Houston State 2-6
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (2,5,4,6,3)