TCU Women’s Tennis competed in the Big 12 Championship Tournament this past weekend and advanced to the quarterfinals after a first-round win over West Virginia. The Frogs ultimately fell in the second round to the eventual champion Texas Longhorns but picked up a nice win to boost their resume for the NCAA selection committee in the process.
The Frogs won convincingly over the Mountaineers in the first round by a score of 4-0. TCU got off to a dominant start in doubles as Helena Narmont and Yu-Chin Tsai beat the second West Virginia pairing by a score of 6-1. Mercedes Aristegui and Jade Otway were bumped up to the number one doubles slot and clinched the point for TCU with a 6-2 victory while Tiphanie Lemaitre and Destinee Martins had a 5-3 lead over the third WVU doubles pairing when the point was clinched.
Aristegui and Otway continued their momentum into singles, winning their matches in straight sets. Otway lost just 2 games as she won her sets by scores of 6-0 and 6-2 while Aristegui won comfortably as well with scores of 6-3 and 6-1 over the top singles player from West Virginia. Margaret Polk finished the sweep for the Frogs with a straight sets win over the number 6 singles player from West Virginia by a score of 6-4, 6-4. Martins and Tsai had both extended their matches to the third set when Polk clinched for TCU while Narmont was in a tiebreaker in the second set trying to force a third set.
TCU was matched up against the Longhorns in the second round who the Frogs had lost to in a very close match during the regular season. The Big 12 Tournament was no different as the Frogs were much closer to victory than the 4-1 final score would indicate. TCU would start off playing from behind as Aristegui/Otway and Tsai/Narmont dropped their doubles matches to give Texas the doubles point. Martins and Lemaitre were tied 4-4 with their UT counterparts when the point was clinched.
TCU would tie the score at 1-1 with a straight sets victory from their number 6 singles player, Helena Narmont, who won her match by a score of 6-1, 6-3. That would unfortunately be the only point the Frogs would win in the match as Texas would rattle off 3 straight singles wins to clinch and move on to the semifinals. Lemaitre was able to push her match to a third set against the top singles player from the Longhorns before eventually falling while Otway and Aristegui were both in third sets when the match was clinched by Texas.
TCU will now await the decision of the NCAA Selection Committee to determine whether or not they will earn a bid to the NCAA Tournament for which the first round will start May 7th. The 64-team bracket will be released on May 1st as the Frogs are currently ranked number 46 in the nation by ITA and have a good shot at receiving an invite to the tournament.
Track and Field
TCU Outdoor Track and Field traveled down to Waco this past Friday and Saturday for the Michael Johnson Invitational.
The Frogs had a very good day one of competition as London Culbreath took home the win in the 5k with a time of 16:44.34 which is top 10 in program history. Peyton McQuillan joined Culbreath on the podium in the 5k with a third-place finish thanks to a time of 16:59.17. Stone Burke was the top Frog runner on the men’s side of the 5k as he finished in second place overall with a time of 14:35.16. Noah Winters finished in third place in the men’s 5k with a time of 14:40.02. Mariana Martinez had a great performance in the 1500 meter with a second overall finish behind a time of 4:33.00 to close out the day for the Frogs.
Gracie Morris started off the day with a win in the 800 meter for the Frogs with a time of 2:03.97 which is the best in program history. Jaren Holmes secured a win in the triple jump for TCU with a leap of 16.40 meters. Theophilus Mudzengerere joined Holmes on the podium as he finished third in the triple jump with a leap of 15.74 meters. The men’s 4x100 team of Emmanuel Ekong, Donnie James, Jais Smith, and Simbarashe Maketa took second overall with a time of 39.69 while the men’s 4x400 team of Maketa, James, David Seete, and Ethan Brown finished third overall thanks to a time of 3:04.30.
The Frogs will wrap up their regular season this weekend with two different meets. TCU will compete in a one-day meet in Abilene, Texas this Thursday as well as the Penn Relays in Philadelphia this Thursday through Saturday.