Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

UMass tennis picks up first Atlantic 10 win, sweeping weekend matchups

Minutewomen improve to 1-0 on the A10 season with win over Saint Boneventure
(Collegian file photo)

The Massachusetts tennis team could not have asked for a better weekend than the one it had this past Saturday and Sunday as UMass won both of its matches by identical scores of 4-0.

Following last weekend’s disappointing upset loss against LIU Brooklyn, the Minutewomen were nearly perfect in their wins against Army on Saturday and Atlantic 10 opponent Saint Bonaventure on Sunday.

“We were able to use the disappointment of the LIU match to fuel us and keep us working hard,” coach Juancarlos Nunez said, citing his team’s strong week of practice as a reason they were able to have a strong turnaround.

Sunday provided an ideal beginning to conference play for UMass. The opening match of the game was at the number two doubles position, where Janja Kovacevic and Martina Bocchi defeated Dominique Mortier and Francesca Chin of SBU.

Kovacevic, like many other Minutewomen, was unbeaten this weekend, winning both day’s singles and doubles contests.

“Janja was a rock,” Nunez said. “We could really count on her at the number three position.”

Kovacevic has been dependable all season long for UMass. The sophomore from Zemun, Serbia, is defending her Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Year honor by putting together another terrific season. She currently sits with a 14-5 record in singles competitions.

This weekend also saw a shift in partnerships for the Minutewomen doubles teams. Junior captain Ruth Crawford was teamed with sophomore Ashley Avery at the number three position, while Kovacevic and Bocchi were paired at number two. The sure-fire team of Ana Yrazusta and Laura Moreno stayed intact.

The second and third teams secured identical 6-1 wins Saturday against Army, while Yrazusta and Moreno were tied at four when their match ended due to UMass clinching the overall victory.

This weekend’s results put UMass at a 5-3 record in head to head contests and an important 1-0 in the Atlantic 10 Conference.

The Minutewomen are off this weekend before they travel to Dartmouth to take on the Big Green from the Ivy League conference. Dartmouth has already gotten the best of UMass at a tournament earlier this year, so UMass will be looking for revenge.

The defending Ivy League Champions defeated UMass at the Big Green Invitational, only dropping one match, with an Ana Yrazusta victory at the first position.

“We are excited,” Nunez explained. “We need to have a couple good weeks of practice. We have already played on their home courts this year and know what they are all about. They have seen us already, and we have already seen them. We will need to execute well.”

The rematch with Dartmouth is scheduled for Saturday, March 3, at 1 p.m., and the Minutewomen will return to A-10 play on Friday, March 16, against Davidson.

Tim Sorota can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @timsorota.

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