Women's Tennis Rallies Past Wyoming To Earn Championship Spot|
April 29, 2017
LAS VEGAS (UNLVRebels.com) - The top-seeded UNLV women's team rallied to win its semifinal match in the Mountain West Championship against fourth-seeded Wyoming, 4-3, Saturday at the Fertitta Tennis Complex.
In a meeting of the league's regular-season divisional champs, UNLV improved to 18-7 overall while the Cowgirls ended their campaign at 18-4.
In what was the first meeting of the season between the two programs, the semifinals turned into a thriller. Wyoming took an early lead by winning the first two completed doubles matches to take the point.
Moving to singles, all-conference honoree Aiwen Zhu tied it up at one-all the with a two-set victory at the No. 2 singles position, beating Dorrottya Jonas 6-3, 6-1. Wyoming retook the lead when Milka Genkova defeated En-Pei Huang 6-3, 6-1 at No. 4. Carol Zi Yang, ranked 48th in the country, regained the lead for the Rebs by fighting off Magdalena Stencel 6-3, 6-4 at the top of the lineup. The No. 3 singles match between UNLV's Anna Bogoslavets and Wyoming's Tessa van Der Ploeg went in favor of the Rebels, winning 6-3, 6-4 and took a 3-2 lead. The Cowgirls would tie the match with a victory at position five where Elisa Koonik beat Paola Artiga 6-4, 6-4. However, the Rebels would grab the victory at the bottom of the lineup where sophomore Jovana Kenic lost the first set but was able to finish off Ana Tkachenko 5-7, 6-3, 6-1.
The victory marked the 300th in the career of head coach Kevin Cory, who has spent all 18 of his seasons as a college head coach with the Rebels. Cory now stands 300-144 all-time, including a sparkling 32-12 in the MW tournament.
"Really proud of what the girls did today," said Cory. "This was a tremendous win beating a very good Wyoming team that is strong from 1 through 6. After a tough doubles point, we really came through and competed well in singles and are happy to be moving on."
"Nice to get win No. 300," said Cory. "You can only do it if you have good players so it's a tribute to all of the great teams and players UNLV has had over the years. It's certainly a milestone but we are just worried about playing well in the championship Sunday."
UNLV improved to 6-0 all-time vs. the Cowgirls in Mountain West Championship history. UNLV, which has won five MW tournament crowns since the inaugural event in 2000, will look to win back-to-back conference tournament championships for the first time in program history.
On Sunday, the Rebels are set to play either No. 3 seed San Jose State at the Fertitta Tennis Complex at 11 a.m. PT. Sunday's championship match can be streamed for free on the Mountain West Network. Live scoring updates of UNLV matches will be available at www.unlvrebels.com. For more information on the 2017 Mountain West Women's Tennis Championship, visit the Championship Central page http://www.themwc.com/page/championship_w-tennis.
#1 UNLV 4, #4 Wyoming 3
#1 UNLV 4, #4 Wyoming 3
Doubles competition 1. En-Pei Huang/Aiwen Zhu (UNLV) vs. Elisa Koonik/Tessa van Der Ploeg (WY) 4-4, unfinished 2. Dorottya Jonas/Ana Tkachenko (WY) def. Carol Yang/Cristina Moroi (UNLV) 6-1 3. Milka Genkova/Magdalena Stencel (WY) def. Paola Artiga/Anna Bogoslavets (UNLV) 6-1
Match Notes: Wyoming Cowgirls 18-4 UNLV 18-7 Order of finish: Doubles (3,2); Singles (2,4,1,3,5,6) 2017 Mountain West Women's Tennis Championship Semifinal #1