Longhorns claim second consecutive Big 12 crown

Chris Caraveo

Texas powered past host Oklahoma State and narrowly slipped past Texas Tech before claiming a second straight conference title.

Freshman Lana Groenvynck provided the biggest spark for the Longhorns in the tournament to keep their title hopes alive.

In the semifinals, the Longhorns and Texas Tech were tied at three before Groenvynck went to a third set against Caroline Starck, and led 6-5 with the deciding game at deuce. She double faulted twice on the first two match points. With the advantage for the third time, she faulted her first serve, but delivered an underhand serve on the next that was not returned to win the match, putting the Longhorns in the championship.

“That was the best underhand serve I think I’ve ever seen,” head coach Patty Fendick-McCain said. “It’s tough as a freshman. Lana began in January and that’s a lot for her to carry on
her shoulder.”

The Longhorns carried their momentum into the championship match against Oklahoma State, earning the doubles point to go up 1-0. Groenvynck pushed the lead to 2-0 in straight sets over Karyn Guttormsen.

Fellow freshman Breaunna Addison added another win to put the Longhorns in position to win the championship.

Senior Aeriel Ellis clinched the match at No. 1 singles as the Longhorns defeated the Cowgirls 4-0.

This is the ninth conference title for Longhorns (17-10, 10-2) since 1997. With the crown, the team gained an automatic bid to the NCAA Championship, which begins May 10.