WVU shows success at Wake Forest Invitational
Published: Tuesday, October 9, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, October 9, 2012 08:10
The West Virginia women’s tennis team continued to develop this weekend with a successful outing at the Wake Forrest Invitational.
"Overall, I think we did pretty well," said Mountaineer head coach Tina Samara. "I think obviously we are seeing we are going to be a lot stronger as a team in the lineup when we get into the dual match season."
One of two returning Mountaineers, senior Emily Mathis led the West Virginia team with a victory on each day of the tournament, which was good enough for a third-place finish in her flight. The icing on the cake for Mathis came Sunday, the final day of competition, when the Flower Mound, Texas, native earned a 6-2 and 6-1 victory over Lindsey Cable of Stetson. Last season, Cable earned a 34-6 record while being named to the All-Atlantic Sun Conference team.
"Emily is just ridiculous; she wins by just pure will," Samara said. "She’s improved a ton (during) her match today, and she finally put together the things we’ve been working (on) today.
"To beat a girl who won 30-plus matches last year is a pretty big deal."
Samara also found a doubles partner for Mathis this weekend. Doubles was an area on which the head coach wanted to work during the tournament, and she decided to team Mathis up with senior transfer Ashley Wooland.
The duo went 2-1 over the weekend and showed promising potential.
"(With) Audrey and Emily together, we have two
seniors out there who should be able to take care of business," Samara said. "They are still very new, so they’re going to be a little bit raw, but I think they have a lot of potential."
Mathis has shown consistency all season. Samara has been waiting for her other returning starter to break out. She believes sophomore Ikktesh Chahal did provide West Virginia with the break-out performance she was hoping to see this weekend.
"(Chahal) is breaking through that barrier that we knew she could go (through)," Samara said. "I really feel like it’s a matter of time before we see really big things out of her. She’s got a very big game."
Chahal went 2-1 on the weekend, and the promise she has shown excites Samara. Despite the success this weekend, Samara is still seeing a few inconsistencies in Chahal and other Mountaineers’ games. The coach is hoping to clean up those inconsistencies in practice before the ITA Regionals on Oct. 19.
"We haven’t gotten completely rid of something that we’ve always had, which is their consistent intensity on a day-to-day basis," Samara said. "We’ve had good practices, we’ve had some not-so-good practices (and) we’ve had some half-good practices.
"I think they are mostly starting to see that’s where the inconsistency comes in the tournament."