Lady Bears continue singles and doubles play during Texas Regional on Saturday
WACO, Texas - All four singles players and both doubles tandems advanced to the next round of play after a successful first day of action at the USTA/ITA Regional Championships on Friday at the Hurd Tennis Center.
In her first collegiate match, freshman Victoria Kisialeva defeated Sam Houston State's Madeleine Mortimore during the opening round of play in straight-sets, 6-0, 6-2. In the second round, she picked up a 6-4, 6-1 against Texas State's Rachel Baldree. On Saturday, Kisialeva will play Rice's Katie Gater.
"She's progressing nicely, but still has a lot of room for growth," head coach Joey Scrivano said. "She understands that, but it was a good start."
Sophomore Megan Horter downed Texas' Juliana Gajic in another straight-set victory, 6-2, 6-1 and defeated Texas Tech's Kenna Kilgo, 7-5, 6-2, in the second round. Horter's next opponent is No. 87 Simona Parajova of TCU, who defeated Horter in her last fall tournament appearance.
"Megan is making a strong argument for our most improved player from last season," Scrivano said. "She's making progress. Today was a really good day for her. She was definitely the highlight of the day because she had the toughest matches. I'm really happy for her because she paid the price over the course of the summer and this fall, and it's starting to pay off."
Both sophomore Ema Burgic and junior Jordaan Sanford earned first-round byes, but were successful in the round of 64. Burgic defeated UNT's Franziska Sprinkmeyer, 6-0, 6-3. Burgic's next opponent is Texas A&M's Anna Mamalat. Sanford won, 6-0, 6-2 against Texas A&M Corpus Christi's Stefania Nicolae, and will take on Texas A&M's Stefania Hristov.
"Jordaan's still not playing the way she needs to play," Scrivano said. "We have a real specific developmental plan with her, and she's not on the right track. Hopefully, she turns it around tomorrow and plays better tennis. Ema looked good today. She's making good progress, and I think she has a good understanding of where we're trying to take her game. I was really pleased with her."
In doubles play, the tandem of Kisialeva and Horter notched a first-round victory over Texas' Gajic and Annat Rabinovich, 8-2. The duo will face Texas A&M's duo of Hristov and Cristina Stancu. Sanford and Burgic received a first-round bye, and will play Texas Tech's Sandra Dynka and Sofya Malysheva. Both Lady Bear doubles teams are set to take the court at 8 a.m. on Saturday.
"That was a tough draw for both teams," Scrivano said. "Any time you play a rival, it's going to be intense. I'm pleased with the way we competed in that specific match. They just found a way to win."
Play will resume again on Saturday, Oct. 20 at 8 a.m., with one round of singles and doubles play, in addition to consolation doubles.