NASHVILLE --- In its home opener, the Tennessee State women's tennis team rolled past the Rhodes Lynx, winning the match 6-1 at the Currey Tennis Center. The Tigers improve to a 5-0 season, while the Lynx move to 0-1.
"The women played a great match today," said head coach Monroe Walker. "Ani had a big win against a very good player who will be a phenomenal player, and as a freshman, played Ani well. The bottom of the lineup played well and took care of business."
Big Blue clinched the doubles point as pairs in Ani Popiashvili/ Pragati Natraj and Aarushi Kakkar/Abhilasha Vishwanath shutout Rhodes 6-0. Phoenix Gandy and Morgan Cage fought long and hard in the No. 1 spot, eventually falling to Dasha Safarian and Caroline Doherty 7-6.
The blue and white took the momenum from the double point into singles, and never looked back. After singles started, the score soon went up 3-0 in favor of the Tigers, with dominant wins by Ashia Jones and Kakkar. Popiashvili squeaked out the first set against Dasha Safarian, arguably the best Lady Lynx. The second set was hard-fought, but Popiashvili upped her intensity and took the match 7-6, 7-5. Natraj closed out the match with a dominating shutout in the No. 6 position to move the women's tennis team to a powerful 5-0 undefeated record.
The Tigers will resume play Feb. 11 against Alabama State at the Currey Tennis Center.
1. POPIASHVILI, Ani (TSUW) def. Dasha Safarian (RHODES) 7-6, 7-5
2. Caroline Doherty (RHODES) def. CAGE, Morgan (TSUW) 6-1, 6-4
3. KAKKAR, Aarushi (TSUW) def. Tricia Sculco (RHODES) 6-2, 6-0
4. JONES, Ashia (TSUW) def. Mia Mullen (RHODES) 6-0, 6-0
5. VISHWANATH, A (TSUW) def. Kayla Thorson (RHODES) 6-0, 6-0
6. NATRAJ, Pragati (TSUW) def. Grace Merriman (RHODES) 6-0, 6-0
1. Dasha Safarian/Caroline Doherty (RHODES) def. GANDY, Phoenix/CAGE, Morgan (TSUW) 7-6
2. POPIASHVILI, Ani/NATRAJ, Pragati (TSUW) def. Mia Mullen/Tricia Sculco (RHODES) 6-0
3. VISHWANATH, A/KAKKAR, Aarushi (TSUW) def. Kayla Thorson/Grace Merriman (RHODES) 6-0