No. 3 Texas hosted a full house Saturday in their highly anticipated match against No. 12 Stanford. After a hard-fought battle, Texas fell 4-3, earning its first home loss and pivoting its record to 8–2.
The Longhorns were off to a rough start after Stanford took the doubles point and served the Turati twins their second doubles loss of the season.
“Stanford’s got a good team,” Texas head coach Howard Joffe said. “I definitely don't think it was our best performance. I think probably the level of the poise of our group, in the doubles particularly and maybe to a lesser degree in the singles, wasn't quite there.”
Stanford is the only team other than North Carolina State to pose a threat to No. 20 seniors Anna and Bianca Turati.
“We were really hype before, you know,” Bianca said. “It 's Stanford. They're one of the best teams in the country for like 20 years, and so we were really hype and that maybe played a role in the doubles because we're trying so hard — maybe too hard. We were getting maybe too hot, and (then) we would lose like a deuce point.”
As for singles, both of the twins earned Texas a victory, Anna at 6-2, 6-2 and Bianca at 6-3, 6-2. Junior Fernanda Labraña contributed to Texas’ three points by earning a 6-4, 6-2 win over her opponent No. 115 Janice Shin.
“Of course we're happy about our singles matches from the wins, but at the same time, it is really disappointing because we came really close to winning the match,” Anna said. “I'm actually sad because I didn't play my best in doubles, but in singles, I think I came out there and I played pretty good tennis at the end of the match, so I'm happy about my win personally. But of course, it's disappointing to lose the match for three.”
Saturday’s match had the Longhorns playing without a couple of their top players, and that may have had an impact on their loss.
“We're playing without two of our players, so I think when we add them in the lineup, we'll be in even better shape.” Bianca said. “So yeah, it's disappointing, but at the same time it's also encouraging because I think that if we have those two players we would become even a tougher team.”
Despite the loss, the Longhorns plan on taking this match as a learning experience for the competition to come.
“I don't think there's a reason to get to (be) the dejected,” Joffe said. “What we learn and take from it is really the critical item and I think just a little bit more poise in these big matches. Each individual player has some stuff that they're working on.”
Texas will travel to Malibu, California, to take on Pepperdine on Friday at 2 p.m.