CORPUS CHRISTI – Despite dropping the doubles point to open the Southland Conference Women’s Tennis Tournament, fourth-seeded Sam Houston State came roaring back to defeat fifth-seeded Texas A&M-Corpus Christi at the Thomas J. Henry Center Thursday.
The Bearkats advance to the semifinals Friday where they will play top-seeded Abilene Christian at 2 p.m.
Sam Houston State needed to win four out of the six singles matches to stay alive Thursday, and the Bearkats started strong. Sophomore Karla De La Luz Montalvo (6-3, 6-2) won at No. 3, Sophomore Roos Gerritsen (6-4, 6-2) took No. 5 and Southland Conference Player of the Year Sahaja Yamalapalli won the No. 1 point in straight sets (6-4, 6-3) as well to give Sam Houston State the lead at 3-1.
The Islanders fought back to pull within 3-2 with a win at No. 2 singles, but freshman Petra Kaszas took the No. 6 point 7-6 (12-10), 0-6, 6-0 to seal the victory.
ACU and Sam Houston State played a close dual match in the regular season. The Wildcats defeated the Bearkats 4-3 in Abilene on March 8. Yamalapalli, freshman Isidora Zivkovic and junior Lusine Chobanyan accounted for Sam Houston State’s three points.