MARTIN, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin tennis team opens the month of April on a seven-match winning streak when it duels against Ohio Valley Conference rivals Austin Peay (April 1) and Murray State (April 2) this weekend.
The Skyhawks are currently 7-3 on the season, posting a 3-0 OVC record in the process. UT Martin has not lost since Feb. 26, winning five road matches in that span. All-time, the Skyhawks are 26-4 against Austin Peay and 21-19 against Murray State.
UT Martin has been especially dominant in league play, winning 17 of 18 singles decisions and six of seven doubles contests. The Skyhawks are coming off a perfect home weekend, winning 7-0 sweeps against Belmont and Tennessee State. Senior Sarah Candeloro was named adidas OVC Female Tennis Athlete of the Week for her efforts over the weekend, as she went a perfect 4-0 while competing at No. 1 in both singles and doubles.
In singles, Candeloro is tied with Burcu Tari and Asel Jumamukhambetova for the team lead with seven wins this spring. Tari (No. 3) and Jumamukhambetova (No. 4) have each won seven straight singles matchups heading into the weekend. That trio joins Hitomi Naito (No. 2) and Andrea Plantada Cortes (No. 5) as Skyhawks who are a perfect 3-0 in OVC competition.
The UT Martin duo of Candeloro/Jemima Potter have claimed a team-high six doubles points (including a 3-0 OVC mark) in 2017. The No. 2 team of Jumamukhambetova/Naito and No. 3 squad of Plantada Cortes/Tari have also reached five victories.
Austin Peay is currently 5-5 overall but is one of three OVC teams to post a 3-0 OVC record, joining UT Martin and SIUE. The Governors boast the top two players on the OVC’s Preseason Top-10 list in Lidia Yanes Garcia (8-2 at No. 1 singles) and Claudia Yanes Garcia (7-2 at No. 2) while the duo of Ana Albertson and Helena Kuppig is responsible for a team-best five doubles wins and a perfect 3-0 OVC mark.
Murray State (5-7, 2-1 OVC) has won three consecutive matches going into the weekend, including OVC victories over Jacksonville State (5-2) and Tennessee State (6-1). Amina Hadzic has gone 7-3 in singles play this spring while the Racer duos of Claire Chang/Alina Schibol and Sara Bjork/Jeanne Masson have each posted team-highs of five wins with a 2-0 record in conference play.