The Trinity womenâ€™s tennis team pulled a 9-0 shutout win against McMurry University Friday April 13.
This win brings the Tigers to 14-5 for the season and marks their sixth consecutive team win.
â€œMcMurry is a scrappy team, at times unpredictable. We knew we had an advantage in terms of skills and ranking, and we ended up doing what we were supposed to do,â€ said sophomore Lavinia Bendandi.
Bendandi won 6-0 and 6-1 in her singles match.Â First year Mackenzie Knoop and junior Thavindra Ekanayake were among the top five players, with wins in both singles and doubles.Â Knoop and Ekanayake won 8-1 in their doubles match and were in the top two singles positions immediately after.Â Knoop won 6-2 and 6-0 in the number one position, and Ekanayake went 6-0 and 6-0 in the number two position.
Sophomore Kylie Hornbeck was nominated SCAC player of the week and went 6-0 twice in the number four slot.
â€œI was incredibly excited to find out and especially surprised, really, since I play number four for Trinity.Â I think, though, that this just shows how strong our team is this year [because] Thavi and Mackenzie have both been SCAC players of the week this year as well, so to have had three of us this season is awesome,â€ Hornbeck said.
â€œKylie has been great all year.Â Sheâ€™s the perfect teammate and competitor.Â Sheâ€™s hardly lost any matches all year.Â She has proven to be very reliable.Â The best part is her demeanor and work ethic.Â Sheâ€™s put in time to work on anything weâ€™ve asked her to do,â€ said head coach Russell McMindes.
Hornbeckâ€™s doubles partner, senior Katie Griffith, also had a successful weekend, winning 6-0 and 6-1 in her singles match.Â Then she paired up with Hornbeck to win 8-3 in the number two position.Â Sophomore Stephanie Williamson was able to win 6-1 and 6-2 in the number six position, and then teamed up with senior Kassie Seger to win 8-4 in the number three doubles position.
The Tigers also had matches against University of Central Oklahoma and Oklahoma Christian University.Â The Tigers unfortunately lost 8-1 and 7-2.Â These two losses bring the Tigers to a 14-7 record for the season.
Mackenzie Knoop was able to snag the Tigersâ€™ only win in the opening match against Central Oklahoma, scoring 7-6 and 7-5 in the number one singles position.Â When Knoop paired up with Ekanayake for their doubles match they unfortunately fell short, losing 8-5.
â€œThis past weekend was a bit rough, as we had one convincing win and then a couple of lopsided losses,â€ McMindes said. â€œThe thing we have been pushing the most is just trying to improve each day and work on being the best competitors we can be.Â Making sure we donâ€™t fold when the pressure mounts or things get close.â€
Both the teams of Griffith and Hornbeck and Williamson and senior Kassie Seger fell short in the matches losing 8-6.Â In Hornbeckâ€™s singles matches she came short with a 7-5, 5-7 and 7-10 loss.
â€œWe were not particularly happy about the matches this past weekend.Â Yes, the teams we played were strong, but I donâ€™t think any of us went into the matches with the right mindset.Â This week weâ€™ve really been trying to regain our focus,â€ said Hornbeck.
Against Oklahoma Christian University all Trinityâ€™s points were via default.
â€œTeam effort in every single practice is the most important thing.As our coaches say, itâ€™s not about talent anymore, itâ€™s about who works harder,â€ Bendandi said. â€œI believe we are working very hard, so hopefully it will pay off in conference and later on.â€
The Tigers conclude their regular season schedule at 10 a.m. on Saturday, April 21, by hosting Hardin-Simmons University.
â€œI feel very confident.Â Itâ€™s our last home match and final match of the regular season before conference, so I know the girls will be excited and eager to perform,â€ McMindes said.