Freshmen lead No. 23 Tarleton to upset win over No. 4 Hawaii Pacific

SAN ANTONIO – Tarleton needed to rally after falling behind 2-0 in Monday’s top-25 matchup against No. 4 Hawaii Pacific. The No. 23-ranked TexAnns got a huge boost from their youngsters in singles action and took the match 4-3 at the Northside Tennis Center.

“Hawaii Pacific is an excellent team,” said head coach Lance Drake. “We knew we were going to have to every point. After losing doubles, we came together, responded the right way and fought hard on all courts. I am very proud of how the girls competed today.”

Hawaii Pacific swept the top two doubles matches of the day to earn the point and head into singles play with an advantage. The Sharks continued their momentum with a win in the No. 1 matchup to put them on top 2-0 early.

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But then, Tarleton’s freshmen trio answered the call with three straight wins in the No. 4, 5, and 6 matches to turn the tide and put Tarleton on top.

Nathalie Ulander improved to 4-2 in singles play this season with a 6-3, 6-1 win in the No. 5 position for Tarleton’s first point of the day. Faustine Palatte followed up with a win in the No. 4 position to even the match at 2-2 and then Sofija Hrovat stepped into the No. 6 position and delivered a 6-3, 7-6 win to put Tarleton on top 3-0. For Hrovat, it’s her second singles win in as many matches this season.

Hawaii Pacific answered back by edging out Neetika Sud in the No. 2 position, despite a three-set effort from the sophomore. The match came down to the final point of the No. 3 position and sophomore Sherine Salem capped off the victory with a 6-4, 7-6 win for the upset. Salem improved to 4-2 this season with the win.

This is Tarleton’s second upset of an ITA Top-25 team this season (No. 11 St. Mary’s).

The complete results are as follows:

DOUBLES

  1. Elodie Busson/Elisa Elhadj (HPU) def. Alicia Barbaroux/Sherine Salem (TSU) 6-1
  2. Mihoki Miyahara/Nicole Ballach (HPU) def. Neetika Sud/Faustine Palatte (TSU) 6-1
  3. Nathalie Ulander/Sofija Hrovat (TSU) vs. Debora Echeverria/Sarah Ikioka (HPU) 4-3, unfinished

SINGLES

  1. Elodie Busson (HPU) def. #43 Alicia Barbaroux (TSU) 6-1, 6-3
  2. Mihoki Miyahara (HPU) def. Neetika Sud (TSU) 6-1, 4-6, 6-2
  3. Sherine Salem (TSU) def. Debora Echeverria (HPU) 6-4, 7-6
  4. Faustine Palatte (TSU) def. Sarah Ikioka (HPU) 6-4, 6-1
  5. Nathalie Ulander (TSU) def. Nicole Ballach (HPU) 6-3, 6-1
  6. Sofija Hrovat (TSU) def. Jayme Waites (HPU) 6-3, 7-6
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