tarleton_logoARKADELPHIA, AR. – Tarleton State Tennis dropped its first nationally ranked battle of the year to open play Friday at the Ouachita Baptist Quad, but rebounded to end the day with a 5-1 win over Delta State.

“Overall, I’m proud of the effort over these last two days,” said head coach Lance Drake. “Southwest Baptist is a top-20 team and we may have fallen short, but we competed hard. Our young team needs these kinds of matches. I was very pleased with the doubles sweep against Delta State. I thought we were striking the ball well and really improving with each match.”

The TexAnns opened the day with a pair of wins over the nation’s No. 18 team, who is also the top-ranked team in the Central region, but ultimately fell 5-2.

The No. 3 doubles pairing of Erika Richarme and Ariadna Cabezas-Marti pulled out a win in doubles with an 8-3 victory while the Bearcats took the top two matches from Luiza Ferraro-Adas andAshleigh Elward (8-2) and Gabriella Jansson and Ellie Stevens (8-5), respectively.

In singles play, Cabezas-Marti earned her second win of the early day by claiming a 6-3, 6-3 win in her No. 6 singles match. Meanwhile, Tarleton fell in the No. 1 (0-6, 0-6), No. 2 (4-6, 1-6) and No. 3 (6-7, 3-6) matches to end things early with five wins for the Bearcats.

Tarleton rebounded in its final contest of the day to hand Delta State a 5-1 loss to round out the TexAnns’ time in Arkadelphia.

The TexAnns swept doubles action with a pair of quick 8-3 wins in the No. 1 and No. 3 matches. The tandem of Elward and Ferraro-Adas took the top-seeded match while Richarme and Cabezas-Marti won the No. 3 match. Jansson and Stevens went down to the wire in the No. 2 match and grinded out a 9-8 win to complete the doubles sweep.

In singles, Cabezas-Marti suffered her first loss of the day in the No. 6 match 3-6, 3-6 but her teammates picked her up by finishing off the No. 1 and No. 3 matches to seal the win for Tarleton. Richarme won the top-seeded match 6-1, 6-4 while Ferraro-Adas claimed the No. 3 match with a 6-1, 6-2 score.

Tarleton State will hit the road on February 19 for a visit to Austin against in-region foe, St. Edward’s