Wins for men’s, women’s tennis

FR. Beck Pennington makes a volley in a 5-8 doubles loss during the UK vs Notre Dame tennis match in Lexington, Ky., on Tuesday, February 12, 2013. Photo by Matt Burns | Staff

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The men’s tennis team played two and won two Tuesday, defeating both Notre Dame and Eastern Kentucky at the Boone Complex.

No. 8 UK (8-1) edged the Fighting Irish, 4-3, in an afternoon match, before sealing a 6-1 victory over the Colonels in the nightcap.

The victories come after the Cats suffered their first loss on the season at No. 19 Illinois on Saturday. “I was really proud of our guys today,” UK assistant coach Matt Emery said. “It’s never easy to come out after a tough loss.”

Despite wins in the doubles for the paring of junior Tom Jomby and freshman Kevin Lai, the Cats lost the doubles point for the first time this season. In singles play, four Cats completed straight-sets victories to give the home squad the four points needed to take the overall match, 4-3.

Against EKU, UK again dropped the doubles point but won all six singles matches at a canter. Five of the six matches were won in straight sets to give the Cats the 6-1 win.

Junior Caitlin McGraw returns a serve during the women's tennis match vs. Belmont at Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex in Lexington, Ky., on Saturday, January 19, 2013. Photo by Jonathan Krueger | Staff

A few hours northeast of Lexington, the women’s team came from behind to defeat Ohio State, 4-3, in Columbus, Ohio.

The Cats (4-2) found themselves down 3-0 early, but reeled off four straight singles wins to clinch the match.

“I am very happy and proud of our team for the way they competed the entire match,” said UK head coach Carlos Drada. “We showed great determination and poise during key moments.”

A tiebreak win in doubles for freshman Nadia Ravita and junior Caitlin McGraw was not enough to stop the Buckeyes taking the doubles point.

After dropping the first two singles matches, things looked bleak for the Cats as the found themselves down 3-0 overall.

Straight-set wins for Ravita and senior Jessica Stiles, coupled with three-set wins for McGraw and sophomore Edmée Morin-Kougoucheff sealed the dramatic comeback.

The women’s team is next in action on Sunday when both Indiana and Northern Kentucky head to Lexington to face the Cats.

This weekend sees the men’s team competing in the ITA National Team Indoor Championships in Seattle, with play beginning Friday.