The Emory University Women's Tennis team kicked off the ITA South Regional in strong fashion on Friday, going a perfect 16-0 in matches on the afternoon. The ITA South Regional Championships is being held in Atlanta at the main Emory campus, Emory's Clairmont campus and at Agnes Scott College.
In singles, Emory ran the table on the opening day of competition as all 10 Eagles advanced to the Round of 16 in the main draw. In the top half of the bracket, top-seed sophomore Ysabel Gonzalez-Rico was one of five Eagles to post a straight set victory, defeating North Carolina Wesleyan's Nicole Halabi 6-2, 6-0. Adding straight set wins were senior Daniela Lopez over Centre's Emily Zelichenok (6-1, 6-0), sophomore Stephanie Taylor over Rhodes' Dasha Safaria (6-2, 6-1) and freshmen Emma Cartledge over Sewanee's Mary Jane McCaghren 6-2, 6-1 and Jessica Fatemi over Centre's Hannah Doherty (6-0, 6-2). Sophomore Sasha Hartje rounded out the Emory winners in the top half, defeating Sewanee's Haley Tucker in three sets 7-6 (2), 1-6, 6-1.
In the lower half of the main singles draw, all four Eagles recorded straight set wins led by sophomore Katie Chang's 6-1, 6-0 victory against Sewanee's Sara Thompson and sophomore Defne Olcay over Centre's Neha Rao (6-3, 6-1). Newcomer Christina Watson topped Sewanee's Lilly Stephens 6-1, 6-1 while classmate Lauren Yoon edged Rhodes' Katherine McGough in three sets 4-6, 7-5, 6-0.
Emory saw five doubles teams entered into the main draw with the five pairings posting a 6-0 record on the opening day of competition. Olcay and Taylor opened the draw with an 8-1 win over Sewanee's Abbie Vaughn and Nelson Tyer Jones in the first round before defeating Rhodes' Katherine McGough and Dallas Bennett 8-2 in the Round of 16. Top-seeded pairing Gonzalez-Rico and Fatemi were victorious 8-2 over Centre's Katherine Sherman and Abigail Kent while Hartje and Watson advanced to the Quarterfinals with an 8-0 triumph against Sewanee's Jordan Besh and Sara Thompson. Other pairs reaching the Quarters were Lopez and Cartledge with their 8-1 win over North Carolina Wesleyan's Nicole Halabi and Gulia Zanutti and Chang and Yoon following their 8-3 win against Sewanee's McCaghren and Adams.
Action of the ITA South Regional Championships continues Saturday morning with the singles' Round of 16, beginning at 8:00 AM.