Tallahassee, FL – The 15th-ranked FSU women’s tennis team opened its dual match season at home Sunday with a doubleheader. The Noles started the day with a 4-3 win over Mercer and wrapped things up with a 5-1 victory over McNeese State. FSU played with just two doubles teams and four singles players in both matches due to limited availabilities.
Despite being shorthanded, FSU dropped just one point in play in picking up the first two dual match wins of the year. FSU’s 22nd-ranked singles player Petra Hule posted four wins Sunday while Anna Arkadianou posted three wins of her own.
“Playing short-handed is never easy but our girls just really rose to the challenge,” said FSU Head Coach Jen Hyde. “As we hoped, we got better and better as the day went on. We had a really dominant day, especially in the second match. We want to keep seeing the level rise as we head into a really competitive ITA Kick-Off national qualifier next weekend.
“As a bonus today, it was really fun to see some familiar faces on the other coaching staffs as well, welcoming back some Seminoles to Tallahassee.”
FSU 5 McNEESE ST 1
With numbers limited, doubles was a rare two-point format. Hule and Arkadianou gave FSU a 1-0 lead with a 6-1 victory. Vic Allen and Kianah Motosono followed shortly after with a 6-0 win to send FSU into singles with a 2-1 lead.
After FSU forfeited a point on court five, the Seminoles went on to win the first two decisions in singles play to clinch the win. Hule, Arkadianou and Lesedi Jacobs secured the win for the Seminoles as each won their singles matches to give FSU the 5-1 win.
FSU 4 MERCER 3
Florida State took the doubles point as Jacobs and Motosono came off first. The two newcomers combined for the 6-4 win. The veteran pair of Hule and Arkadianou won their first set point in a dual match this season with a 6-3 victory.
In singles, the Noles climbed right back into the match on courts three and four after two singles forfeits. Arkadianou was first off with an impressive 6-0, 6-0 win to even the overall score at 2-2. Motosono put the Seminoles back in front 3-2 with her 6-0, 6-0 win. Hule clinched the victory as she won on court one 6-3, 6-0.
“It’s never easy to start a match with an 0-2 deficit before you even strike a ball, but that circumstance was in the cards for us today,” said Hyde. “I’m proud of the team because they weren’t fazed by that fact, and just took care of their courts and of that challenge today. They all had a no-excuses mentality. Just as in life, tennis will also throw you challenges along the way, and having that mindset can take teams a long way in the challenges that come along in a season of play.
“We will enjoy the wins, and enjoy starting the spring season off right, but the focus will quickly turn to preparing this week for our next matchup on Saturday against Illinois here at home.”
The Seminoles are back in action next week hosting ITA Kickoff Weekend Saturday and Sunday. FSU will open with Illinois, Saturday at 11:00 a.m. and then play either Florida or FIU Sunday. Times for Sunday’s matches will be determined following play on Saturday.
For more information on the Seminole Women’s Tennis program, please follow us on social at FSUWTennis (IG) and @FSU_WTennis (TW) and log on to Seminoles.com.