Lady Vols Tennis vs Cincinnati

The Tennessee women’s tennis team’s season ended Saturday with a 4-2 loss to Virginia in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

The Lady Vols dropped the doubles point to start the day for the second time in their last five games. Eleonora Molinaro and Tenika McGiffin were shutout on court one, before the No. 32-ranked duo of Daria Kuczer and Esther Adeshina picked up a win on court two to even the score. Tennessee was unable to finish, as Carly Briggs and Rebeka Mertena lost their set and Virginia took the doubles point.

After Virginia opened singles play with a win, No. 66 Briggs cut the deficit in half with her second-straight solo match victory. The Cavaliers took the next match in court one, but Johanna Silva kept Tennessee in the match with a clutch win of her own. The win was Silva’s 88th of her career, good for 14th all-time on the Lady Vols’ singles career win list.

Needing to win the last two points, Tennessee came up just short. Kuczer fell to Virginia’s Hibah Shaikh, and the Lady Vols were eliminated.

The Lady Vols finished the season 17-9 and 8-5 in conference play. Not counting last year’s pandemic shortened season, the 17 wins were the lowest single-season total in head coach Allison Ojeda’s five year tenure at UT.

Nonetheless, it was a fine year for Tennessee women’s tennis. The Lady Vols finished fifth in the SEC and were the runners-up in the SEC Tournament.

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