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Iowa women’s tennis finds spark, sweeps Wisconsin and Minnesota




The women’s tennis team put in two excellent performances this weekend as the men’s team continues to struggle.

Brianna Brown

Ohio State doubles partners bump in the Iowa women’s tennis meet against Ohio State on Sunday, March 7, 2021. The Hawkeyes were defeated by the Ohio State Buckeye’s 2-5.

The Iowa women’s tennis team swept its games against No. 49 Wisconsin and Minnesota this weekend and came back to win both games after losing the doubles point.

Hawkeyes’ 5-2 win over Golden Gophers Sunday was one of their best performances of the season.

Every player in the singles line-up won their game, with the exception of freshman Vipasha Mehra, who was unable to continue the momentum of her victory on Friday.

I think we’ve really proven something for ourselves, said Sasha Schmid, head of the Iowa women’s tennis coach. Can come back and not rely on [the doubles point] and being able to win matches against these good teams in singles.

An Elise van Heuvelen Treadwell, 5-7, 7-6, 6-1, comeback victory under the lights sealed the win over Wisconsin in the women’s first outdoor home game this season.

In her five-year career, it was the first time that van Heuvelen Treadwell played with a 3 – 3 tie.

If everyone’s looking at three, it’s all up to you, said van Heuvelen Treadwell. And you have to get the job done. I am just happy with the result.

The Badgers and Hawkeyes were tied at No. 49 in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s rankings during the match.

The men’s tennis team is now in the midst of a four-game drought. With losses to No. 8 Michigan and Michigan State, the program is in the middle of its longest losing streak since January 2018. The team will be retired at the end of the academic year.

This is not the Iowa tennis program I have built, said Iowa chiefs tennis coach Ross Wilson. This is not the Iowa tennis program our boys helped build. The things that happened to us in the last year, I think, just took our hearts away, and it is a real shame that they did.

After losing the doubles point to start the day on Sunday, the Hawkeyes looked like they were on their way to bounce back in their first outdoor game of the season.

RELATED:Iowa tennis hopes to bounce back

Sophomore Oliver Okonkwo, junior Joe Tyler, and seniors Kareem Allaf and Jason Christmas all won the first set of their singles matches, and junior Will Davies came back from a loss in the first set to dominate the second set of his match.

It all went south after that when Okonkwo dropped the next two sets and freshman Peter Alam quickly lost, 6-2, 6-3.

Davies is known for getting through the match on the line, but he couldn’t deal with Nick Williams repeated attacks on the net. His 2-6, 6-1, 4-6, loss would decide Michigan State.

Everyone doesn’t have to argue with their schedule being scrapped by their administration, getting them killed at the end of the season, and being forced to move elsewhere, Wilson said. I appreciate our boys every day for showing up and having to play for Iowa if they want to play tennis because I think that’s really hard to do.

Friday’s game against Michigan marked the first time this season that the Hawkeyes lost after winning the doubles match.

Davies was the only Iowa player to win a singles match on Friday.

No. 39 Allaf had a thrilling three-set match against No. 28 Ondrej Styler, where the UAE resident came back from behind and won a tiebreaker in the second set. Styler had a little more gas in the tank for the third set, however, and he won the match 6-2, 6-7, 6-2.

We’ve been through a lot of setbacks, whether that’s competitions or of course everything else we’ve dealt with over the past 12 months, Christmas said. It’s not at all at a point where you hit the panic button.

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