CORPUS CHRISTI – The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi women's tennis team will head out on the road for the final time in conference play on Saturday, April 19, to face first-year Southland member Incarnate Word in San Antonio. The Islanders and Cardinals are slated for a 1 p.m. start at the UIW Tennis Courts.
"This is a road match against a team we certainly respect," Director of Tennis Steve Moore said. "This team is on a mission, and on a journey and we realize we have to have every girl show up with great energy and play every point with intensity tomorrow."
The Islanders (17-5, 9-1 SLC) have secured a spot in the Southland Conference Tournament, hosted by Texas A&M - Corpus Christi, and are at the top of the Southland standings with Northwestern State. The Islanders have won nine straight in conference play and 11 of their last 12 matches.
A&M - Corpus Christi posted a crucial victory in Austin on Wednesday, topping Abilene Christian, 6-1. The Islanders garnered the doubles point before clinching five out of the six singles matches.
In singles play, Celia Rodriguez and Judit Vives are both on a 10-match winning streak. On Wednesday, Rodriguez clinched the match for the Islanders in the No. 4 slot to improve her mark to 14-0 in No. 4 singles and now holds an overall 17-3 mark, including an 8-1 record in Southland action. Vives also picked up her 10th straight singles victory and her fourth at No. 2 singles against ACU. The freshman has tallied a 16-1 record in singles play in her first year, and a 9-1 mark in the conference. She has also registered a 4-0 record at No. 2 singles.
Senior Sandra Burges has been a consistent leader for the Islanders in singles action. She posted her 11th victory of the season in the No. 5 slot with a straight-set win over ACU on Wednesday. The Zaragoza, Spain native has tallied a career dual-match record of 57-21 and a conference record of 30-11 in her four years. Her 57 wins are the most by any Islanders women's player in program history. This season, Burges is 16-5 in singles play, including a 9-1 mark in the conference.
Burges and Vives have teamed up in doubles play this season for a 10-4 record, including a 6-1 mark in No. 2 doubles. The senior-freshman duo are on a three-match winning streak. Maider Martin and Rodriguez have also had a solid season in conference doubles play with a 5-2 record and an overall mark of 11-5.
Incarnate Word (5-17, 1-10 SLC) will conclude their season on Saturday against the Islanders. The Cardinals are coming off a 6-1 loss to Central Arkansas in conference play. Prior to that, UIW posted their first conference win of the season, 4-3, over Oral Roberts. Ivana Katavic leads the team at No. 1 singles with a 7-10 mark, while the duo of Jennifer Betancourt and Sarah Savedra have picked up three wins in Southland doubles play.
The match will mark the Islanders first meeting with the Cardinals under Coach Moore.
Following Saturday's match, the women's team will join the men's team for their final regular-season match on Monday, April 21, at 1 p.m. at the Thomas J. Henry Tennis Center against New Orleans. The match will also be the final regular-season match for seniors Stefania Nicolae, Ashley Garza, Cassie Shaw and Burges, along with Matt Westmoreland for the men's team.
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