Baylor women’s tennis falls to Texas A&M

By Cody Soto
Sports Writer

No. 6 Baylor women’s tennis dropped a 4-2 decision to No. 30 Texas A&M on the road Thursday evening, losing its fifth-straight match to the Aggies.

The Lady Bears (15-4, 2-0 Big 12) snapped a three-game winning streak, which included two conference road wins against Oklahoma State and Oklahoma last week and a home win over No. 14 University of Miami earlier this week.

Baylor women’s tennis is now 5-3 on the road, where it has lost every match to ranked teams over the past month: No. 30 Texas A&M, then-No. 15 Michigan and then-No. 12 Vanderbilt. Prior to that, the Lady Bears were a perfect 10-0 to start the season.

The Lady Bears and Aggies (6-3, 3-0 SEC) fought it out in doubles play to start out the match at George P. Mitchell Tennis Center. Junior Rachael James-Baker and sophomore Theresa Van Zyl flopped their match with a disappointing 6-0 sweep at the No. 3 spot against Rutuja Bhosale and Saska Gavrilovska.

Baylor stormed back on the No. 2 court as sophomore Kelley Anderson and freshman Leolia JeanJean took a 6-4 win over the No. 32-ranked duo of Rachel Pierson and Eva Paalma. That tied the doubles score 1-1 and left the fate of the doubles point to the result of court one.

The 10th-ranked pair of senior Ema Burgic and sophomore Blair Shankle could not hold off the upset against the No. 29-ranked duo of Ines Deheza and Stefania Hristov for a 6-4 loss, and the Aggies took an early 1-0 lead over Baylor.

JeanJean’s singles match was abandoned at the No. 4 spot early and gave the Aggies a 2-0 lead in the match. She lost the opening set 7-6 against No. 57 Rutuja Bhosale.

The Lady Bears put a point on the board after Anderson toppled No. 123 Hristov 6-4, 6-4 at the No. 6 spot. It was her third straight win at the bottom of the lineup.

No. 31 Shankle followed in pursuit and defeated Deheza 7-5, 6-2 at the No. 2 spot to tie up the match 2-2, but that’s the closest the Lady Bears would get to winning the meet.

The final two points went to the Aggies after Van Zyl fell 7-5, 6-1 against Paalma on court five, and No. 75 junior Kiah Generette dropped her match 7-6, 6-2 to No. 62 Gavrilovska.

Baylor will look to get back on its feet quickly as it returns to Waco to host its Big 12 conference home opener against TCU at noon Sunday.