No. 1 Texas women’s tennis opens dual match play with 7-0 sweep of Texas State

Hunter Dworaczyk, Sports Reporter

As the defending national champions, No. 1 Texas women’s tennis faces pressure to repeat last season’s results. 

The No. 1 Longhorns started their title defense off on the right foot at the Texas Tennis Center Sunday, not dropping a single set in a 7-0 victory against Texas State. The contest served as the team’s first dual match since the 2021 NCAA Championship last May.

Texas mostly relied on their freshmen in place of No. 40 ranked sophomore Kylie Collins Sunday, allowing them more experience on the court. The Longhorns started four freshmen for the doubles action and three freshmen for the singles play.

Texas snagged a 1-0 lead with a doubles point, starting with the sophomore duo of Peyton Stearns and Charlotte Chavatipon in a 6-1 win against Texas State’s Hana Kvapilova and Sofia Fortuno.

The freshman pair of Sabina Zeynalova and Vivian Ovrootsky impressed in their Longhorn debut, clinching the doubles point with a 6-0 shutout against the Bobcats’ Mae McCutcheon and Maria Lora.

The freshman twin duo of Allura and Bella Zamarripa held a 4-3 lead against their opponents before the match was abandoned.

Coming off of a perfect 3–0 record in singles during last weekend’s Miami Invitational, Stearns continued her winning streak. The sophomore cruised to a 6-1 first set victory against Kvapilova. Stearns seemed unfazed by an early 2-1 deficit in the second set, winning five out of the next six games and clinching the match. 

Chavatipon continued to display control on court 2, earning a 6-2 first set victory against Texas State’s Kate Malazonia. The sophomore followed up her first set performance with a 6-0 shutout victory in the second set, clinching the match.

Zeynalova’s dual match was her first appearance as a Longhorn, but the Ukraine product showed her talent early, claiming a decisive 6-1, 6-0 match victory against Fortuno.

Sophomore Malaika Rapolu, ranked No. 117 by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association, delivered a consistent performance Sunday. The sophomore claimed a 6-2, 6-2 victory against the Bobcats’ Maria Lora.

Freshman Bella Zamarripa controlled the entirety of her match against Jadeh Chan, posting a 6-0 shutout victory in the first set. Zamarripa then skillfully earned a 6-1 victory in the next set to clinch the match. 

In the most competitive singles match of the day, Ovrootsky earned a 7-5 victory against McCutcheon in a back-and-forth first set. With all of the other singles matches finished, all eyes were on court 3 for the freshman’s next set. Despite Sunday’s dual match being her first as a Longhorn, Ovrootsky masterfully handled the pressure, winning the set 6-2 to secure the sweep. 

Texas is back in action at home Friday when the team faces Florida Atlantic in the ITA Kickoff Weekend. The Longhorns look to build on their current 25-match win streak that dates back to last February.