No.  3 Women’s Tennis defeats No. 3  5 Virginia in NCAA Quarterfinals, 4-2

No. 3 Women’s Tennis defeats No. 3 5 Virginia in NCAA Quarterfinals, 4-2

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — The No. 3 University of Texas Women’s Tennis team (24-4) claimed a hard-fought 4-2 victory against No. 5 Virginia (23-6) in a NCAA Quarterfinals match on Friday afternoon indoors at the Atkins Tennis Center. The Longhorns captured the doubles point and earned straight-set singles wins from Charlotte Chavatipon, Sabina Zeynalova and Allura Zamarripa to clinch the dual-match victory.

With the win, the Longhorns advance to face No. 1 North Carolina in the NCAA Semifinals on Saturday, May 21 at 4 pm Central. Texas earned its ninth appearance in the NCAA Semifinals with Friday’s victory, including the second straight under head coach Howard Joffe. The Longhorns have now earned trips to the “Final Four” in 1990, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1997, 2005, 2021 and 2022.

In a match that was moved indoors due to high winds, Texas grabbed a 1-0 lead by winning the doubles point. Virginia’s No. 3-ranked duo of Emma Navarro and Hibah Shaikh earned a 6-2 victory on court 1 against UT’s No. 11-ranked tandem of sophomore Peyton Stearns and Allura Zamarripa. Tied at 2-2, Navarro and Shaikh won four-straight games to close out the 6-2 win.

The freshman pair of Sabina Zeynalova and Bella Zamarripa, playing together for just the fifth time this season and first since April 23 against Oklahoma State in the Big 12 Championship semifinals, claimed an impressive 6-3 win on court 3 over the No. 73-ranked duo of Sofia Munera and Amber O’Dell. Munera and O’Dell jumped out to a 2-0 lead, before Zeynalova and Zamarripa won back-to-back games to even the set at 2-2. Later tied at 3-3, Zeynalova and Zamarripa held serve, earned a service break on a deuce point and then held serve again to close out the 6-3 victory. The freshman tandem improved to 2-2 in dual-match doubles play this year.

The No. 67-ranked sophomore duo of Charlotte Chavatipon and Kylie Collins clinched the doubles point with a 6-3 win on court 2 over the No. 62-ranked pair of Elaine Chervinsky and Natasha Subhash. On serve at 3-3, Chavatipon and Collins held serve on a deuce point to take a 4-3 lead. Chavatipon and Collins followed with a service break and then held serve to finish out the win and improve to 16-3 in doubles overall this season, including an 11-1 mark in dual-match action.

Virginia responded quickly with wins at the top two singles spots to take a 2-1 lead in the overall dual-match team score. No. 1 Navarro claimed a 6-1, 6-0 win on court 1 over No. 2 Stearns, and No. 44 Subhash followed with a 6-2, 6-0 victory on court 2 against No. 49 Collins. The loss by Stearns snapped a 14-match win streak and marked just her second singles defeat of the season, as she fell to 25-2 on the year.

Chavatipon earned a 6-4, 6-1 win on court 4 over Munera to even the dual-match score at 2-2. Trailing 2-1 in her opening set, Chavatipon won three-straight games to build a 4-2 cushion. Both players held serve for the next four games, and Chavatipon earned the 6-4 first-set victory. Tied at 1-1 in the second set, Chavatipon earned a service break to take a 2-1 advantage and then claimed the next four games to finish out the match and improve to 21-10 overall in singles this season, including a 14- 3 mark in dual-match action on court 4. Chavatipon is now 6-0 in singles on court 4 in postseason play this year, including a 4-0 mark in the NCAA Tournament.

No. 93 Zeynalova followed with a 6-4, 7-5 victory on court 3 against Chervinsky. Tied at 4-4 in the opening set, Zeynalova earned a service break on a deuce point and then held serve on a deuce point to post a 6-4 first-set win. Zeynalova built a 4-2 cushion in the second set, but Chervinsky rallied to win three-straight games to take a 5-4 advantage. Zeynalova held serve and then followed with a service break before holding serve again to complete the victory and move to 21-1 in dual-match singles play this year. She improved to 4-0 in singles during the NCAA Tournament.

Allura Zamarripa clinched the dual-match victory with a 7-5, 6-4 win on court 5 over Shaikh. Shaikh jumped out to a 4-2 advantage in the opening set, before Zamarripa won three-straight games to take a 5-4 lead. After Sheikh held serve to even the set at 5-5, Zamarripa held her serve and then forced a service break on a deuce point to close out the 7-5 first-set win. Zamarripa built a 3-1 cushion in the second set, but Shaikh responded by winning the next three games to take a 4-3 advantage. Zamarripa earned a service break and then held serve to grab a 6-5 lead, and she closed out the match by breaking Shaikh at-love. Zamarripa moved to 9-2 in dual-match singles action this spring, including a 3-0 mark in the NCAA Tournament on court 5.

The remaining singles match featuring freshman Vivian Ovrootsky on court 6 was stopped once Allura Zamarripa clinched the dual-match win. Ovrootsky and Sara Ziodato had split their opening two sets, with Ziodato winning the first 6-2 and Ovrootsky answering with a 7-5 victory in the second. Ziodato held a 3-2 lead as the match was on serve in the third set.

#3 Texas 4, #5 Virginia 2

Doubles – Order of finish (1, 3, 2)

  1. #3 Emma Navarro/Hibah Shaikh (UVA) def. #11 Peyton Stearns/Allura Zamarripa (UT), 6-2
  2. #67 Charlotte Chavatipon/Kylie Collins (UT) def. #62 Elaine Chervinsky/Natasha Subhash (UVA), 6-3
  3. Sabina Zeynalova/Bella Zamarripa (UT) def. #73 Sofia Munera/Amber O’Dell (UVA), 6-3

Singles – Order of finish (1, 2, 4, 3, 5)

  1. #1 Emma Navarro (UVA) def. #2 Peyton Stearns (UT), 6-1, 6-0
  2. #44 Natasha Subhash (UVA) def. #49 Kylie Collins (UT), 6-2, 6-0
  3. #93 Sabina Zeynalova (UT) def. #72 Elaine Chervinsky (UVA), 6-4, 7-5
  4. Charlotte Chavatipon (UT) def. Sofia Munera (UVA), 6-4, 6-1
  5. Allura Zamarripa (UT) def. Hibah Shaikh (UVA), 7-5, 6-4
  6. Vivian Ovrootsky (UT) vs. Sara Ziodato (UVA), 2-6, 7-5, 2-3, unfinished

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