Kentucky womens tennis splits doubleheader against Tennessee and Bellarmine


Elizabeth Stevens high fives Carla Girbau after scoring a point during the University of Kentucky vs. Tennessee women’s tennis match on Sunday, March 28, 2021, at Hillary J. Boone Tennis Center in Lexington, Kentucky. Photo by Michael Clubb | Staff

Jonathon Bruner, Reporter

Kentucky womens tennis (7-6) split its double header on Saturday, losing to the No. 16 Tennessee Volunteers (11-2) by a score of 4-2 and defeating Bellarmine (3-11) 5-2.

The day began on the doubles courts, and it did not go the Wildcats’ way as freshman Zoe Hammond and sophomore Ellie Eades were defeated by a score of 6-2.

The pair of junior Makayla Mills and senior Florencia Urrutia had the same bad luck as their teammates as they were also defeated 6-2, giving Tennessee the doubles point and making the score 1-0 going into singles play. 

Singles matches began with the same fate for Kentucky as Eades was defeated in straight sets by scores of 6-4 and 6-0 to give the Vols a 2-0 lead. 

The next match saw Stevens being defeated in straight sets by two scores of 6-3 that extended the Vols’ lead to 3-0. 

With their backs against the wall the Wildcats would call on senior Florencia Urrutia to keep the game alive and Urrutia would do just that as she secured a victory over a ranked opponent in a three-set battle to make the score 3-1.

The Wildcats would look to use the momentum to keep themselves alive in the game as sophomore Lidia Gonzalez won another three-set battle to cut the Vols lead to 3-2. 

The Wildcats would continue to play with the game on the line and this time their luck ran out as freshman Zoe Hammond was defeated in straight sets to secure a 4-2 win for the Volunteers.

The Wildcats would then look to shake the loss off and focus on Bellarmine, something they wasted no time in doing as the pairing of Eades and Hammond would get the Wildcats their first doubles win of the day as they won 6-2.

Mills and Urrutia were next on the doubles courts, and they also got the job done as they won by a score of 6-3 to give the Wildcats a 1-0 lead. 

The singles matches would begin much like the doubles matches as Mills defeated her opponent in straight sets by scores of 6-4 and 6-1 to propel Kentucky ahead 2-0. 

Due to a lineup shift, the Wildcats forfeited their next singles match, cutting their lead in half. 

Molina was up next on the singles court, and she got the win in her match by scores of 6-4 and 6-3, putting Kentucky just one win away from victory.

One point away from the win, next up for the Wildcats was Eades, who would be defeated in straight sets by scores of 7-5 and 6-0, which kept Bellarmine alive with the score at 3-2. 

Urrutia was next for the Wildcats as she looked to return them to their winning ways, something she was able to do as she outlasted her opponent in a three-set battle to extend the lead to 4-2. 

Finally, needing just one more point to secure the win, senior Maialen Morante was able to close the game for the Wildcats in dominant fashion as she won the final match of the day in straight sets by scores of 6-1 and 6-0. 

With the win, the Wildcats will head to Columbia, South Carolina, to take on the South Carolina Gamecocks. The matchup against the Gamecocks will take place on Friday, March 17, at 5 p.m. EST.