ELON-The North Carolina A&T women's tennis head coach James Dunwoody got a chance to see how his team looks in competition this weekend, as the Aggies played in their first fall preseason event, the Elon Fall Invitational.
Ten of his 12 players competed, playing in two singles matches a piece and at least two doubles matches. The Aggies finished the weekend with four singles wins and three doubles wins, showing their coach and future opponents their mettle. The Aggies had three doubles teams compete on Sunday afternoon to wrap up the tournament.
"The first day they were kind of awestruck with the level of competition," said Dunwoody. "I think the second day they came to the realization that it's a ball that comes across the net-it has a name on it, not a school's name on it. I thought they made a good adjustment."
On Friday, freshman Takeyrah Reid from Las Vegas, Nev., defeated Julia Aguilar from N.C. Central by a 6-0, 6-2 final. Reid was the only one to win a match for A&T on Friday. On Saturday, senior Cayla Cross defeated Sara Ruiz from Western Carolina 5-7, 6-1, 10-5. Junior Victorea Austin and freshman Jayla Scott also picked up singles wins on Saturday.
In doubles play, Scott and sophomore Kenya Colbert picked up a 7-6 win against Meredith to advance to the final round on Sunday against a duo from Elon. Scott and Colbert lost to Elon 8-1. Also on Saturday, the duos of senior April Burrage and Reid and freshman Unique Hawkins and junior Kendra Esparza-Harris each picked up a doubles win to advance to the final round to face each other. Burrage and Reid defeated Hawkins and Esparza-Harris 6-1, 6-2.
In addition to getting a preview on how his team will look on the court in competition, Dunwoody and the Aggies were also able to get a sneak peak at some of their upcoming opponents, including N.C. Central, Elon and UNC Greensboro.
Dunwoody said he was pleased with the look of his team, in terms of their conditioning, as well as their attitude on the court. Preseason action will enable him to see where his team can improve for its regular season in the spring. Among the areas A&T will be working on is doubles competition and the team's footwork.
"We have to give the new people a chance to adjust to the not only the academic side, but also adjust to the pace and the intensity. It takes a couple of months for them to determine that they're not in high school anymore. Once they accept that, we'll go to work," he said.
Isabel von Stryk (USC -Upstate) def. Cayla Cross 6-1, 6-1
Puja Patel (Meredith) def. Kenya Colbert 6-1, 6-0
Taylor Cohen (USC-Upstate) def. Jayla Scott 6-0, 6-1
Natasha Afridi (Campbell) def. Nianna Henry 6-2, 6-0
Mia Ramic (N.C. Central) def. Unique Hawkins 6-0, 6-0
Loures Ros (Campbell) def. April Burrage 6-0, 6-2
Takeyrah Reid def. Julia Aguilar (N.C. Central) 6-0, 6-2
Aissa Mumba (N.C. Central) def. Kendra Esparza-Harris 6-0, 6-0
Maria Camara (Elon) def. Kimberly Stalling 6-0, 6-3
Viviana Stavreva (Elon) def. Victorea Austin 6-0, 6-1
Telenga/Ros (Campbell) def. Jayla Scott/Kenya Colbert 8-0
Jimenez/Maguire (Western Carolina) def. April Burrage/Takeyrah Reid 8-1
Lindsey/Renz (Campbell) def. Unique Hawkins/Kendra Esparza-Harris 8-1
Falcon/Gammie (UNC Greensboro) def. Cayla Cross/Nianna Henry 8-0
Patel/Hunt (Meredith) def. Victorea Austin/Kimberly Stalling 8-2
Cayla Cross def. Sara Ruiz (Western Carolina) 5-7, 6-1, 10-5
Stephanie Falcon (UNC Greensboro) def. Cayla Cross 6-1, 6-0
Allison Beeler (USC-Upstate) def. Kimberly Stalling default
Jayla Scott def. Ewa Telenga (Campbell) default
Amy Ellis (UNC Greensboro) def. Jayla Scott 6-1, 6-4
Amy Ellis (UNC Greensboro) def. Kenya Colbert 6-2, 6-1
Nicole Nielly (Western Carolina) def. Nianna Henry 6-0, 6-1
Victorea Austin def. Mary Lawrence Newton (Meredith) default
Nicole Nielly (Western Carolina) def. Victorea Austin 6-3, 6-1
Shannon Bettiol (Western Carolina) def. Unique Hawkins 6-1, 6-0
Marshal Temory (Virginia Tech) def. April Burrage, 6-2, 7-6 (9)
Caroline Baker (Elon) def. Takeyrah Reid 6-1, 6-1
Caroline Lindsay (Campbell) def. Kendra Esparza-Harris 6-0, 6-0
Ruiz/Kissell (Western Carolina) def. Cayla Cross/Nianna Henry 8-1
Conley/Temory (Virginia Tech) def. Victorea Austin/Kimberly Stalling 8-6
Jayla Scott/Kenya Colbert def. Edwards/Newton (Meredith) 7-6 (ret.)
April Burrage/Takeyrah Reid def. Musgrave/Thomson (Meredith) 8-5
Unique Hawkins/Kendra Esparza-Harris def. Bye
Lazarova/Stavreva (Elon) def. Jayla Scott/Kenya Colbert 8-1
April Burrage/Takeyrah Reid def. Unique Hawkins/Kendra Esparza-Harris 6-1, 6-2