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WOMEN’S TENNIS CENTRAL: No. 19 Tennessee vs. No. 7 NC State

WOMEN’S TENNIS CENTRAL: No. 19 Tennessee vs. No. 7 NC State

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – The No. 19 Tennessee women’s tennis team is gearing up to host No. 7 NC State on Saturday at 1 p.m. at Goodfriend Tennis Center. The two teams will meet for the 11th time in program history. 

The Lady Volunteers are coming off a 1-1 showing in ITA Kickoff Weekend action in Knoxville, notching a 4-3 comeback win over No. 25 Vanderbilt, before falling to No. 18 USC, 4-2. 

Tennessee (5-1) secured five wins in a row to start the season, defeating Furman, Chattanooga, Wake Forest, Bellarmine and No. 25 Vanderbilt. It marked the first time since 2018 that the team opened a season with a 5-0 start, including the third time in the Alison Ojeda era.

Battling the Ranked:

Four members of the Tennessee women’s team have taken down ranked opponents this season. No. 92 Sofia Cabezas beat No. 42 Cassie Wooten of Wake Forest in a 6-3, 6-3 win. Lauren Anzalotta landed a 6-4, 6-1 decision over Vanderbilt’s No. 95 Holly Staff. Catherine Auila earned a hard-fought 1-6, 7-5, 6-4 triumph over No. 24 Bridget Stammel from Vanderbilt. Alana Wolfberg defeated No. 42 Naomi Cheong of USC for a victory, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3. 

On the doubles side, Adeshina and Wolfberg were the first duo of the season to knock off a ranked pair, they beat No. 29 Parker Fry and Grace Piper 7-6 (4) of USC.

Hot Start in Doubles: 

Two of Tennessee’s doubles pairs currently sit unbeaten heading into the weekend. Graduate student Alana Wolfberg and senior Esther Adeshina have landed four wins together. The duo most recently took down No. 29 in Parker Fry and Grace Piper of USC. Sophomore Leyla Britez and junior Eleonora Molinaro are also undefeated when playing doubles together. The pair is 2-0 in the young season.

Milestones in Singles:

During ITA Kickoff Weekend, Alana Wolfberg and Lauren Anzalotta both notched their 40th career singles win. Anzalotta’s came against No. 25 Vanderbilt while taking on No. 95 Holly Staff. The senior pulled a 6-4, 6-1 win against the Commodore. Wolfberg tallied her victory against No. 42 Naomi Cheong from USC. The graduate student fended off Cheong, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.

Lady Vols in the Rankings:

The Intercollegiate Tennis Association announced on Wednesday morning that Tennessee is No. 19 in the third poll of 2024. Southeastern Conference preseason poll voting also selected the team to finish in a tie for sixth place, alongside South Carolina. The following members of the team were ranked in the final fall ITA individual poll posted on Nov. 15, 2023:

Alana Wolfberg No. 91

Sofia Cabezas No. 92

Eleonora Molinaro No. 100

Elza Tomase No. 115

Esther Adeshina and Sofia Cabezas No. 19

Catherine Aulia and Alana Wolfberg No. 42

NC State in the Rankings:

Ameilia Racjecki No. 3 

Sophie Abrams No. 19 

Abigail Rencheli No. 27

Anna Zryanova No. 40

Maddy Zampardo No. 116

Ameilia Racjecki and Maddy Zampardo No. 7 

Sophie Abrams and Anna Zryanova No. 9 

Gabriella Bradfoot and Abigail Rencheli No. 52 

Scouting the Wolfpack:

Tennessee and NC State are at an even 5-5 tie in the all-time series. The last time the two squads met was on Feb. 5, 2023, when the Lady Vols dropped a 6-1 result in Raleigh, N.C. The Wolfpack will travel five players ranked in singles and three pairs of ranked doubles players.
 

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