Utah State women's tennis (9-7, 0-0 MW) will host in-state rival BYU (8-4, 2-1 WCC) on Thursday, March 22, at 11 a.m., at the Sports Academy and Racquet Club. The matchup marks the first time in program history the Aggies have hosted the Cougars.
"It is always fun playing BYU," head coach Sean McInerney said. "They are a really good program and it will be a good test. Over the past month, both teams have been playing at a high level, so we are looking forward to a really good college tennis match.
Utah State is coming off a week break after going 3-1 in California during spring break with neutral court wins over Boston University (4-3) and Seton Hall (4-3), an away win over UC Riverside (5-2) and a road loss at CS Fullerton (4-2). Sophomore Hannah Jones was named the Mountain West Women's Tennis Player of the Week for her performance against Seton Hall, UCR and CSF after going 4-0 in singles and doubles play. Overall in singles, USU is led by freshman Sasha Pisareva who is 9-6 at the No. 1 spot, followed by Jones who is 8-6 at the Nos. 2 through 5 spots. In doubles, senior Maggie O'Meara and junior Jenna Kane are 4-2 at the Nos. 1 and 2 spots, sophomore Sophia Haleas and redshirt freshman Alexandra Taylor are 3-2 at the Nos. 2 and 3 spots and O'Meara and Pisareva are 3-3 at the Nos. 1 and 2 spots.
BYU leads Utah State, 8-1, in program history, with the teams splitting the last two matchups. In singles for the Cougars, sophomore Polina Malykh is 8-0 at the Nos. 4 and 5 spots, while sophomore Kate Cusick is 7-3 at the Nos. 3 and 4 spots. In doubles, junior Taylah Beckman and sophomore Samantha Smith lead BYU with a 7-1 mark at the No. 3 spot.
The first 75 fans in attendance at the match will receive a ‘This Is Our State’ shirt. In between the doubles and singles matches, fans can participate in a return a serve competition where fans try to return a serve into one of the hula hoops on the court. The first three fans to return a serve into a hula hoop will receive a Utah State prize pack.
Ashley Springer is a student at Utah State University studying journalism and communication. Springer is an intern with the USU athletic department's media relations.