Bahamian collegiate tennis players get their seasons underway

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The Nassau GuardianSend an emailSeptember 30, 2022 416 3 minute readFacebookTwitterLinkedInShare via Email

 Jacob Bain and Sydney Clarke

Bahamian collegiate tennis athletes are getting prepared for the 2022/23 season, and a number of them have experienced preseason action with their respective teams.

There are approximately nine athletes who are on the tennis college scholarships in the United States. The Bahamas Lawn Tennis Association (BLTA) congratulates each of them on their hard work thus far, and wish them the very best in their upcoming seasons.

Jacobi Bain, a member of the Xavier University of Louisiana (XULA) Gold Rush men’s tennis team, was awarded the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) South Region Rookie Award for his performance for the 2021/22 season. Bain finished with a 20-7 win/loss record in singles and was 26-9 in doubles last year.

Bain started his 2022/23 season at the HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) National Tournament. In singles, Bain who was seeded third, played well but lost against Jonasz Dziopak, of Tennessee State University, 6-3 and 6-0.

Bain obtained success in doubles with partner VanDer Woody. They captured the doubles title, 6-3, over Ruan Du Preez and Sam Bajracharya of Alabama State University.

Competing for the Hampton University Pirates, Donte Armbrister and his doubles partner Emiliano Jorquera won the title at the Elon Fall Invitational Powell Doubles Tournament. In the championship match, Armbrister and Jorquera won over Naresh Bharathy and Neiman Sneed from North Carolina Central University, 7-5. In singles, Armbrister lost to Eder Blanco of North Carolina A&T State University, 6-2 and 7-6, in the second round.

At the Christopher Newport University (CNU) Fall Invitational the week prior, Armbrister was a perfect 4-0 in singles and doubles.

Elana Mackey and the Mars Hill Lions competed in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s (ITA) Division II Southeast Regional Championships. In singles, Mackey lost in the round of 16 to the sixth seeded Dana Heimen of Flagler College, 6-4 and 6-4. In doubles, Mackey partnered with Amanda Kadiri and they lost 8-4 to Evgeniya Pugina and Lucy Whelan of Lenoir-Ryne University.

Sydney Clarke and the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Blazers competed in the Samford Fall Round-Robin Tournament.

In singles, Clarke won over Karen Yibirin of Middle Tennesee State University, 6-0 and 6-1, and Sean Mullen of Tulane, 6-4 and 6-0. In doubles, Clarke and Enya Ratkic came back from being down 5-0 to win over Tulane’s Mullen and Lily Walther, 7-5.

Clarke and UAB opened up their fall season at the Austin Peay Tournament where Clarke won over Arbelaz Maria of Cumberland University, 6-0 and 6-2, and had some well-fought matches where she lost against Emma Honore of Murray State, 6-1 and 6-4, Coco Bosman of UT Martin College, 6-3 and 6-2, and 1-6, 6-0 and 10-7, to Melody Hefti of Austin Peay State University. In doubles, Clarke and partner Mackenzie White won over Denise Torrealba and Lucy Lascheck of Austin Peay, 6-4. Clarke also teamed up with Annalisa Smith and they defeated Coco Bosman and Callie Billman of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, 6-2. Clarke would rack up another doubles win with Alexandra da Silva as they defeated Elina Sungatullina and Juanita Mendez of Cumberland University, 6-1.

Abigail Simms and the Indiana Tech Warriors are coming off a 2022 season in which they repeated as Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference (WHAC) Champions. They started the season, playing at Goshen College. Playing in the number two position in singles, Simms won over Carmen Aliaga of Gosher, 6-0 and 6-0. Simms won in doubles as well and the Warriors won the matchup, 6-0.

At the Indiana Wesleyan University (IWU) Fall Classic, Simms and partner Criss Echavaria lost to the host’s France Antezana and Sofia Loren Munoz in doubles, 6-2.

Kofi Bowe and the Johnson C. Smith University Golden Bulls are expected to experience action when they take on Elana Mackey and the Mars Hill Lions. Bahamian Shaytonya Missick also plays for the Golden Bulls.

Bahamian Anthony Burrows Jr. plays for the University of Missouri-St. Louis Tritons. Burrows is in his freshman year. They will face Missouri Baptist on October 7.

Peyton Anderson plays for the Southwest Minnesota State University Mustangs. Playing in the number five position in singles, Anderson, a freshman, played against Claire Nemmers of Minnesota State University at Moorhead and won, 6-4 and 7-5. In doubles, Anderson and partner Roz Oye won, 6-0, in the number three doubles position.

Against the University of Nebraska at Kearney, Anderson teamed up with Roz Oye in doubles and they fell, 6-2. In singles, she lost, 6-0 and 6-3, to Plachy Clare.

“We are excited for our returning athletes and our new athletes who will be adjusting to the college scene. We pray that you all are successful on the courts and in the classroom,” the BLTA stated in a press release. “We congratulate Joshua Turnquest, Sierra Donaldson, Hannah-Joy Simms and Afrika Smith who graduated last season and wish them well as they undertake their various pursuits.”

The collegiate tennis season continues for a number of the Bahamians players in the coming weeks.

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