Islanders Dominate Opening Day of Marco & Co. Catering Islanders Open

CORPUS CHRISTI – The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi men's and women's tennis teams opened the fall season today at the Marco and Co. Catering Islanders Open. Despite inclement weather that pushed some matches indoors, the men's team advanced five to the singles quarterfinals and two doubles to the quarterfinals. The women's team also adapted to playing indoors and have advanced two in the quarterfinals of the singles draw with the possibility of three moving on tomorrow. The women's team also dominated in the doubles draws with all three teams powering their way to the quarterfinals.

"I thought our players did a good job today of taking care of the things they can control," Director of Tennis Steve Moore said. "The rain and change to indoors gives you more challenges to prepare and focus and I like the choices our team made today. I thought they competed very hard and really encouraged each other."

The men's team played on the indoor and outdoor courts of the Corpus Christi Athletic Club and performed strong in their opening tournament of the fall. After receiving a bye in the opening round, Matt Westmoreland swept UIW's Tucker Brown 6-0, 6-0, to advance to the quarterfinals where he will face Islanders freshman Paul Cook. Cook secured a 6-2, 6-2 victory over Joseph Bishop of UTPA in his first collegiate match and followed it with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Harley Pearson of UTSA to advance. Also making his collegiate debut in singles play was freshman Kevin Bettendroffer. The native of France received a bye in his first round and followed it with a 6-0, 6-1 impressive victory over Brody Rodriguez of UIW. Bettendroffer will face Jair Assuncao of UIW tomorrow. Assuncao topped sophomore Guillaume Rauseo 7-5, 6-4 in the second round. Rauseo clinched his opening match 6-1, 7-5 over Matthew Mussenden of UTSA.  

Ricardo Mayagoitia will also compete in the quarterfinals tomorrow after picking up a 6-1, 6-4 second round victory over Brandon Davis of UIW. Mayagoitia earned a bye in his opening round of competition. The sophomore will take on Islanders junior Pietro Jordao in the quarterfinals. Jordao topped Fabian Brand of UTSA in the first round 6-2, 6-0 and followed it with a 3-6, 6-3 (7) victory over Leonard Ivic of UIW.

Javier Pujol dropped a tough second round loss to Josip Smoljan of UIW 6-2, 2-6 (8) and will play in the consolation round tomorrow against Mauricio Fosado of UTPA.

In doubles action, Bettendroffer and Rauseo teamed up to advance to the semifinals tomorrow. The duo topped Mussenden and Brand of UTSA in the first round 8-3 and followed it with an 8-3 victory over Job and Sanoja of UTPA. The pair will play Hopker and Panditi of UTPA tomorrow. The duo of Westmoreland and Cook topped UTPA's Bishop and Fosado 8-6 in the second round after a first round bye. The two will take on Pearson and Kamijanov of UTSA tomorrow in the semifinals. The pair topped Mayagoitia and Jordao 8-6 in the second round.

On the women's side, the reigning Marco & Co. Catering Islanders Open champion Maider Martin clinched both of her singles matches at the HEB Tennis Center to advance to the quarterfinals. The sophomore sealed a 6-1, 6-0 victory over Brianah Creek of UIW in the opening round and followed it with a 6-1, 6-0 victory over Summer Biggs of St. Edward University in the second round. Also advancing to the quarterfinals is senior Sandra Burges who notched a 6-0, 6-2 first round victory over Ana Spengler of Lamar. She followed in with a 6-4, 6-1 second round win over Tina Rupert of Houston.

Chelsea Horan picked up a 7-5, 6-1 victory over Asthon Garcia of Texas A&M – Kingsville to advance to the second round. She will face Rocio Fernandez of Houston tomorrow. Stefanie Nicolae opened with a 6-1, 6-1 first round victory over Nina Rodriguez of UIW and will face Hana Elving of Lamar tomorrow in the second round. Also sealing a victory in her opening match was Celia Rodriguez. The sophomore took a 6-1, 6-0 win over Kelsey Robbin of UIW and will take on Lamar's Dariya Dashutine tomorrow. Cassie Shaw dropped a 6-2, 6-2 loss in the opening round to Elving and will play in the consolation round tomorrow.

The Islanders doubles teams had an impressive opening round of competition with all three advancing to the quarterfinals. Nicolae and Martin teamed up to take an 8-2 victory over Lapayeva and Summer of Lamar. The duo will play Savedra and Betancourts of UIW tomorrow. Burges and Horan followed suit with an 8-3 victory over Strahl and Reblin of UIW and will face a familiar pair in Rodriguez and Ashley Garza. The two sealed an 8-3 victory over Dashutina and Kulibaba of Lamar and will face Burges and Horan tomorrow. 

 "I can't thank Marco and Co. Catering enough for all of their support and the great food they provided the entire tournament," Moore added. "We are also very grateful to the HEB Tennis Center and the Corpus Christi Athletic Club for graciously helping us with the indoor courts. This tournament would not have been possible today without them."

The men's and women's doubles will begin at 8:30 a.m. tomorrow at the HEB Tennis Center with the women's singles to follow. The men's singles will start at 11 a.m. at the Corpus Christi Athletic Club.

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