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Women’s Tennis: Owls win final match in doubles, singles at Bedford Cup 2023

The Owls are starting 2023-2024 in the right direction, winning the final match in doubles and singles at the Bedford Cup 2023
Gasner Delvarin, Jr.
Sophomore Carla Galmiche training before the 2023 Bedford Cup held at the University of South Florida.

Over the weekend, five FAU women’s tennis players competed in the Bedford Cup. Three came home with a final victory in singles and one final victory in doubles. 

“I am very happy with how my game is feeling going into this year,” said McGinnis after her last match. “I feel my confidence is coming back. Pushing through these matches and getting the win in pressure situations is what I need. I know I can do it, and I’m starting to trust myself.”

Saturday- 9/30

On Saturday, the FAU women’s tennis sophomore Carla Galmiche and redshirt junior Amber McGinnis won in doubles at the Green Playoff final of the Bedford Cup this Saturday. 

In singles, the team made it through the finals back draws this Sunday behind the hard-fought performances of the freshman Victoria Gomez O’Hayon, Galmiche, and McGinnis at the Bedford Cup 2023, hosted by the University Of South Florida (USF) in Tampa, Fla.

A majority of the Owls’ roster saw action on opening day on the hardcourts surface, including sophomore Maya Shanok, who unfortunately was injured during singles.

Teamed up in doubles, Matthews and O’Hayon lost 7-6 to the University of North Florida (UNF) pair of graduate Amy Kaplan and junior Isabel Oliveira. 

In the Green East bracket, Galmiche and McGinnis were victorious 6-2 against Stetson University’s Cleanne Pickel, who paired with Clelia Lombardi of Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU).  

In the rounds of 16 singles on the Varsity Courts, O’Hayon put up a strong performance against USF sophomore Melisa Senli on Court 2 in the Gold East bracket, 6-0, 6-3, to start the competition. Also in the Gold East bracket, Galmiche fell to Florida International University’s (FIU) sophomore Ekaterina Khairutdinova 7-5, 6-0, in the same bracket on Court 7. 

In other brackets, in the Green East, McGinnis also fell to FIU’s freshman Petja Drame 6-0, 6-1, but Shanok won her round 1 on Court 6 in a tiebreak 6-0, 7-6, 10-6. 

On Court 4, Matthews couldn’t overcome a sustained injury and forfeited the match as a retirement injury to Stetson sophomore Alanna DiFrancesco at 6-3.

In the quarterfinals, Galmiche fought in the Gold West Draw stage against Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) junior Sara Rakim to stay on course after winning the match in the third set super tiebreak 7-5, 7-6, 10-2.  

O’Hayon faced a new opponent in the Gold East draw in FGCU junior Isabella Colmenares. O’Hayon took the first set to the tiebreaker but lost the set 7-6. O’Hayon recovered in the second set to take it at 6-2 and won the match in the third set super tiebreak 10-8 to reach the East Semifinal, facing FIU sophomore Oyinlomo Quadre.

McGinnis found success in the Green West Draw bracket when she came back from behind to beat FGCU’s Clelia Lombardi in the third set super tiebreak 6-7, 6-0, 10-3. Meanwhile, Shanok joined Matthews on the injury-retirement list, falling 6-2 in the first set to UNF.    

In doubles to start the second-day event, Matthews came back in action to continue her duo with O’Hayon in the Gold West draw bracket to win against FGCU’s senior Jordana Ossa and graduate Ida Ferding 7-5 in the semifinal. The pair couldn’t maintain their form and fell to the FIU pair Khairutdinova and Quadre 6-2 in the Gold West final.

“I hurt my hip,” Matthews explained, referring to her retirement. “I wasn’t fully ready, so I just stuck to doubles.” 

McGinnis and Galmiche fell 6-4 in the Green East draw to Florida State University’s (FSU) freshmen Maelie Monfils and Laura Putz. 

However, they redeemed themselves in the Green playoff final 7-6 against FIU’s freshman Kristyna Hrancova and sophomore Katerina Mandelikova to give the Owls their first finals victory.

In singles Varsity Courts, O’Hayon started the Gold East semifinal intense on Court 5 but was eventually defeated by  FIU’s Quadre in three sets, 6-3, 1-6, 10-5, missing out on the Gold East final. The Spanish freshman will square up against University of Florida’s sophomore Sophie Williams.

Galmiche also lost in the Gold West on Court 1 in straight sets, 7-6, 6-2, to USF’s senior Grace Schumacher and missed out on the final in that bracket. However, Galmiche reached the Gold Southwest final against FSU’s Putz. 

McGinnis saw the same fate as she fell in the semifinal Green West bracket to UNF’s Kaplan 6-2, 6-4. But as the tournament is structured, she has another shot in the Green Southwest draw in the final against Ireland Simme of USF.

The tournament officials created an extra bracket for extra matches on Sunday to allow players who were injured and wanted to continue another shot to reach the final in that competition. Shanok is set to resume action at 10:30 a.m., while Matthews remains out due to a hip injury.

Sunday- 10/1

On Sunday, O’Hayon, Galmiche, and McGinnis won their singles finals matches in their respective back draw on the Varsity Courts.  

The Spaniard O’Hayon started off the final match on Court 10 in a tough battle with Florida’s Williams, leading to a tiebreaker in the first set she came out on top at 7-5. With one set to win it all, O’Hayon performed better in the second set to win the final in two straight sets, with a final score of 7-5, 6-4, giving her third place in the tournament.

“I think it has been a very positive tournament for me,” said O’Hayon. “I am happy because I have shown a great improvement in my game, and that gives me a lot of confidence for the next tournament.”  

Galmiche entered her Gold Southwest on Court 12 final against FSU’s Putz and didn’t take the opportunity for granted. The sophomore French woman did quick work in the first set at 6-3 before Putz started to apply more pressure in the following sets. Putz won the second set 4-6. Nevertheless, Galmiche remained focused despite Putz being ahead at 4-1 in the super tiebreak before she turned the score around to win it at 15-13 in her final match.

“I felt tense,” said Galmiche. “And my level of play was not the best, but I’m proud of myself because I fought until the end.”

On Court 6 in the Southwest final, McGinnis was up against USF sophomore Ireland Simme. McGinnis took the first set at 6-4. But Simme returned to take the second set at 6-2. McGinnis buckled up in the third set super tiebreak to run away with the final score victory 6-4, 2-6, 10-2.      

The FAU women’s tennis team’s next tournament is scheduled from Oct. 9 to Oct. 15 in the ITF Tournament 25K in Florence, SC.

Gasner Delvarin Jr. is a staff writer for the University Press. For more information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected].

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