Wildcats Bounce Back, Beat Memphis 4-2

Final Results (PDF)

– No. 70 K-State women’s tennis bounced back from Friday’s loss by capturing four singles victories on Saturday en route to a 4-2 win over Memphis at the Dick Savitt Tennis Center.

With wins by Sara Castellano, Ana Garcia Navas, Millie Stretton and Livia Cirnu, the Wildcats (6-3) were able to overcome the loss of the doubles point to start the match.

After Friday’s setback at the hands of No. 50 Columbia due to losing all of its singles matches, K-State recovered to earn its third win over its last four matches. The Wildcats have a pair of home matches next weekend before the Big 12 opener against Baylor in Manhattan on March 10. However, all of their next five opponents are slotted in the ITA rankings.

“I am happy we were able to bounce back with a solid match today,” said K-State head coach Danielle Steinberg. “I do not think we played our best tennis this weekend, but we need to learn to find ways to put ourselves in a good position in even tougher days.”

Memphis (1-8) took the early point with wins at the No. 1 and 2 position in doubles. Hanna Sohn and Janina Berres defeated Carolina Costamagna and Stretton 6-3 while Kathryn Hughes and Gabrielle Paul topped Garcia Navas and Bago 6-2.

“We did not come out as strong today as we did yesterday (in doubles), and it cost us the point,” said Steinberg. “We need to do a better job at shot selection in our doubles, mainly because the doubles set is so quick. Overall, I am very happy with our doubles and the progress we are making every match, but we simply cannot afford to give free points.”

The Wildcats set the Tigers down with the help of straight-set wins for Garcia Navas, Stretton and Cirnu. Castellano’s triumph in the No. 1 position followed a first-set loss for the redshirt sophomore. Castellano went on to capture the match against Sohn with a 2-6, 6-0, 6-2 result.

Stretton, who suffered her first loss of the dual season on Friday, recovered with a victory over Paul 6-1, 6-3. The win improved the freshman’s mark in dual singles to 8-1.

Cirnu, meanwhile, upped her record to 7-2 with a 6-2, 7-5 decision over McElroy.

Next weekend, K-State returns to Manhattan for a March 4 matchup against No. 54 Denver followed by a March 6 contest versus No. 49 SMU.

No. 1: Castellano (K-State) def. Sohn (Memphis) 2-6, 6-0, 6-2
No. 2: Garcia Navas (K-State) def. Hughes (Memphis) 6-4, 6-2
No. 3: Costamagna (K-State) vs. Morga (Memphis) 5-7, 5-4 unfinished
No. 4: Berres (Memphis) def. Bago (K-State) 6-4, 6-2
No. 5: Stretton (K-State) def. Paul (Memphis) 6-1, 6-3
No. 6: Cirnu (K-State) def. McElroy (Memphis) 6-2, 7-5

No. 1: Sohn/Berres (Memphis) def. Costamagna/Stretton (K-State) 6-3
No. 2: Hughes/Paul (Memphis) def. Garcia Navas/Bago (K-State) 6-2
No. 3: Juhasz/Castellano (K-State) vs. Morga/McElroy (Memphis) 5-4 unfinished