The Collegian
Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Women’s tennis defeated Norfolk State in first home game of the season

<p>UR junior Leonor Oliveira during her match against Norfolk State on Feb. 9. Photo courtesy of Richmond Athletics.&nbsp;</p>

UR junior Leonor Oliveira during her match against Norfolk State on Feb. 9. Photo courtesy of Richmond Athletics. 

Note: Claire Le Du is a writer for The Collegian.

The University of Richmond women’s tennis team notched its second win of the season Thursday afternoon after defeating Norfolk State University at the Westhampton Tennis Courts.

With the 6-1 home-opener win, UR improved its record to 2-6 on the season.

In doubles competition, the Spiders swept the Spartans 3-0, led by junior Andy Campodonico and junior Polina Shitikova with a 6-2 victory. First-year Lara Bakhaya and senior Marta Buendia defeated their opponents 7-5, while junior Leonor Oliveira and junior Carly Cohen finished with a 7-6 win.

“Wind was tough at times,” associate head coach Jacob Dunbar said. “They were mentally strong through all of it and just stayed focused.”

With momentum after winning all doubles matches, the Spiders went 5-1 against the Spartans in singles action. Redshirt sophomore Claire Le Du led the way for UR with a 6-1 and 6-4 win, followed by Campodonico’s 7-5 and 6-0 victory over her opponent. Campodonico was recently named to the Atlantic 10 Preseason All-Conference team.

“I wasn’t feeling that great about my tennis, so that boosted my confidence,” Campodonico said. 

Oliveira and Bakhaya both won their singles matches after two sets, while first-year Elizabeth Novak defeated her opponents after three sets. Cohen wrapped up the day for the Spiders with a 4-6, 6-4 and 6-10 loss. 

The newly released 2023 A-10 Preseason Poll placed UR third, behind the defending champion Virginia Commonwealth University and the University of Massachusetts. UR tallied 131 total points in the ranking and received one first-place vote. Dunbar is confident about the team’s chance at winning the conference this season, he said.

“If that’s where we are now, that’s fine,” Dunbar said. “But I think by the end, we expect it to be different.”

The UR women’s tennis team will play again on Feb. 18, facing East Carolina University on the road.

Contact lifestyle editor Son Tran at son.tran@richmond.edu. 

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