Kentucky women’s tennis sweep doubleheader; improve to 6-0 on season


Carlota Molina prepares for her doubles partner to serve during the University of Kentucky vs. Louisiana State women’s tennis meet on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021, at the Hillary J. Boone Tennis Complex in Lexington, Kentucky. UK lost 4-3. Photo by Michael Clubb | Staff

Jaron Centers

The Kentucky womens tennis team swept Sunday’s doubleheader against Southeast Missouri State, taking the first match 6-1, and the second 4-0. The pair of victories improves the Cats to 6-0 on the season. 

Kentucky’s first match got off to a hot start, off a doubles point secured by the duo of Lidia Gonzalez and Carla Girbau taking down SEMO’s Lera Valeeva and Ksenia Shikanova, 6-3. The 59th-ranked doubles pair Elizabeth Stevens and Carlota Molina defeated Romana Tarajova and Myroslava Zelenchuk, 6-2. 

UK’s first singles points came from Florencia Urrutia, as she bested Shikanova 6-3, 6-1 on court four. No. 100 ranked Molina took down Zelenchuk 6-3, 7-6(4) while Stevens sealed the win over Tarajova 6-7(5), 6-2, 6-2 taking her second match-clinching point on the day. 

Closing out Sunday’s first match, Gonzalez beat Vivian Lai in a 6-2, 6-0 decision while Maialen Morante claimed her first singles victory of the season against Valeeva, 6-0, 6-3, in spot six. 

The Cats showed no signs of slowing down in the second match, taking the first doubles point. Fiona Arrese and Urrutia took down Tarajova and Zelenchuk, 6-3 to remain undefeated (4-0) this season as a duo. In similar fashion, Girbau and Ellie Eades bested Daniela Hlacikova and Lai, 6-2, to complete the doubles sweep.

UK’s Arrese handily defeated Shikanova, 6-1, 6-3, after receiving her first loss of the season in match one. The rest of the Cats’ singles matches followed suit in an impressive showing. Girbau finished a 6-1, 6-2 win over Hlacikova, while Urrutia topped Zelenchuk, 6-1, 6-2, her first clinch of her career. The pair of victories sealed the Kentucky sweep.

Kentucky gets back on the court on Sunday, Feb. 13 for another doubleheader with Penn State and Western Kentucky at home. The match against the Nittany Lions is set for 11 a.m. ET, while the Lady Toppers are set for 4 p.m.