Texas shocks powerhouse Stanford over weekend

Logan Harvill

The No. 21 Longhorns moved to 7–4 on the season after winning both of their matches this weekend.

The Longhorns dominated South Florida (6–1) on Friday before surprising No. 6 Stanford (4–2) on Saturday. The victories came after a poor stretch in which the Longhorns lost four of five games, including three straight losses heading into this weekend at the ITA National Indoor Championships.

“We had a couple of tough weeks. We couldn’t win but we were trying so hard, and we kept practicing as hard as we could,” sophomore Anna Turati said. “This means so much to us. It’s a huge win, and we did it together.”

The Longhorns had no trouble on Friday, facing South Florida. After winning the doubles point, a point the Longhorns have struggled to earn all season, Texas dominated in singles play. While the match might have seemed insignificant, it marked the first time the Longhorns had played at home in a month, and the first time they had played in their new Texas Tennis Center. Since the grand opening of the new facility on Jan. 21, rain and a long road stretch have prevented the Longhorn women from playing matches on their home court, which can play a significant role in a player’s psyche during a match.

Earlier in the week, Texas prepared to play indoors against Stanford after the weather had forecast rain. But the Longhorns claimed their second victory at the Texas Tennis Center against one of the strongest tennis programs in the nation and a team the Longhorns hadn’t beat in 23 years.

After losing the opening doubles point, the Longhorns defeated Stanford 4-2 thanks to their strong singles play, with No. 41-ranked Turati securing the win after coming back from a 5-1 deficit.

“In the context of turning a program around, in the context of this season, and then historically, it couldn’t be a bigger win,” Texas head coach Howard Joffe said. “To have a team like Stanford here, a perennial top team in the nation really, and actually pull off the win … I’m so happy for our kids.”