January 29, 2022
No. 18 Women’s Advances at ITA Weekend Kickoff Regional
Tallahassee, FL – The 18thth-placed FSU women’s tennis advanced to the winning division at the regional ITA Kickoff Weekend in Tallahassee on Saturday afternoon. The Seminoles defeated Illinois 4-3 and now meet the winner of No. 19 Florida and FIU at 2:00 p.m. Sunday. The win led FSU to a perfect 3-0 this season.
Due to player availability, FSU started 1–0 in doubles for the third consecutive doubles game and again did what they had to do to take the point and take a 1–0 lead. Vic Allen and Kianah Motosono won 6-2 in second place. In an even finish, it was up to Petra Hule and Lesedi Jacobs to put the Noles ahead and the pair did just that to move up to 3-0 as a team with a 6-4 win in first place to end the to get a point.
“The team did such a mature job in doubles early in the game and then really got going,” said FSU head coach Jen Hyde. “We got some big leads in first and second place and having to give up three is an extra pressure but again they handled it very well. Being able to get back to 1-1 in the singles was crucial.
FSU went into singles tied 1-1 after dropping a point in row six. Hule got away first, giving the Seminoles a 2-0 lead. The 6-4, 7-5 win took the senior to 3-0 in doubles this season. Allen brought FSU within a point of the win as they won in straight sets in fourth place, 7-6 (8-6), 7-5. Illinois then edged FSU in the bottom three in the third set, eventually leveling the match 3-3, but elder transferee Kianah Motosono recorded the walk-off victory that tied her match 7-5, 4-6 , 6-3 won.
“We had some excellent performances from a couple today and some other performances that we still need to improve on, but the great thing is that tomorrow we can come back and work on that,” Hyde said. “The fight was good considering where we are in the season. We have to keep growing, we have to keep getting better, we have to keep taking advantage of the opportunities we have and we will. It’s just a matter of our steps, and we’re slowly getting there. It’s a great start against a really good and competitive Illinois team.
“We said at the end of the week there will be no excuses. No matter how many we have, we have the group to get it done. Kudos to Vic for stepping in after just finding out she was going to be playing singles last night. She stepped forward and took care of things in two sentences. It was a tremendous effort on her part. Petra was stuck in one place. She went through some demons in the second set and was as balanced and mature when it mattered most and Kianah at the bottom. Both girls were behind and tensing up as she was just a little harder today. That made a big difference and it’s great that she got her first clinch as Nole.”
The Seminoles are back in action Sunday as ITA Kickoff weekend continues. FSU plays either Florida or FIU at 2:00 a.m. Sunday. The venue of the game is expected to be at the Scott Speicher Memorial Tennis Center, barring any change in Sunday temperature forecasts.
For the latest information on the Seminole Women’s Tennis program, please follow us on social media at FSUWTennis (IG) and @FSU_WTennis (TW) and log on to Seminoles.com.