MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - Head coach Laura Glitz presented her women’s tennis team one main objective at the beginning of the ITA Ohio Valley Regional Championships – improve in singles. Over the five-day tournament, which began Thursday, the Boilermakers posted a 14-6 record through two flights of singles with junior transfer Silvia Ambrosio finishing runner-up in the main. Glitz was pleased.
Ambrosio is now 9-1 all-time in a Purdue uniform, including a 6-1 mark at the regional event. Additionally, of those seven matches, her first five ended in straight-set victories. It was not until the second set of her semifinals match that Ambrosio was even tested. The Boilermaker quickly refocused, though, defeating Kentucky’s Mami Adachi 6-3, 6-7(4), 6-2 at Middle Tennessee State’s Adams Tennis Center.
During the championship match Monday, Ambrosio fought hard to take control in the first, forcing a tiebreak at six all. However, fellow Wildcat Justina Mikulskyte bested the Boilermaker 7-6(9) and cruised through the second 6-3 to win the regional.
Purdue’s five other players, including Rafaella Baquerizo who was not projected to compete, were also a force in singles. Freshman Ena Babic finished 3-1, making it to the round of 16 in the main draw. Her three wins were highlighted by a straight-set victory over the higher seeded Emily Smith of Vanderbilt. Sophomore Alex Sabe also posted a pair of victories in the main.
In the second flight, Zala Dovnik earned her first win as a Boilermaker, defeating Austin Peay’s Brittney Covinton 6-1, 6-3. The freshman went on to win her next match in straight sets as well, before losing in the quarterfinals.
What Purdue gained in singles play, though, it did give up in doubles. After only dropping one contest during the Boilermakers’ opening fall invite, the team’s two duos went 2-2 combined in the main draw last weekend. Amina Mukhametshina lost 8-3 in the first round with Sabe as her partner, while Ambrosio and Babic earned a pair of victories before falling in the round of 16.
This week, Purdue will look to combine the best aspects from its two starting performances as the team prepares for the Hoosier Invite. Day one begins Friday in Bloomington, Indiana.