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Blue Raiders best Cougars in Fresno

(Photo by BYU Photo)

FRESNO, Calif. – The BYU women's tennis team fell 4-3 to Middle Tennessee on Thursday at the Spalding G. Wathen Tennis Center in Fresno, California. 

Senior Savannah Ware-Avina led the way for the Cougars, picking up wins in both singles and doubles. 

BYU (3-6, 0-0 West Coast Conference) opened the doubles competition with Ware-Avina and freshman Samantha Smith defeating MTSU's (6-9, 0-3 Conference USA) Sarah Sediri and Luisa Zirilli 6-2 on court one. The Blue Raiders responded with a 6-4 win on court three before securing a close 7-5 victory on court two to take a 1-0 lead. 

Middle Tennessee extended the lead to 2-0 after Zirilli overpowered Smith at the No. 4 singles slot with a 6-2, 6-4 win. BYU battle back to tie the match at 2-2 after freshman Kate Cusick defeated Costanza Magazzini 7-6 (5), 6-4 on court three and Ware-Avina won 6-4, 6-2 against the Blue Raiders' Maria Josefina Zehdner at first singles. Middle Tennessee clinched the match for the 4-3 win after picking up wins at fifth and sixth singles. Senior Natella Nabieva picked up the final BYU point of the match with a 7-6 (5), 6-3 victory over Lidia Burrows at first singles.

BYU remains in Fresno to face Fresno State tomorrow, Friday, March 10, at 10 a.m. PST. Fans can check the BYU schedule page for information regarding live coverage.

Middle Tennessee 4, BYU 3

Singles competition

1. Savannah Ware-Avina (BYU) def. Maria Josefina Zehdner (MTSU) 6-4, 6-2

2. Natella Nabieva (BYU) def. Lidia Burrows 7-6(5), 6-3

3. Kate Cusick (BYU) def. Constanza Magazzini (MTSU) 7-6(5), 6-4

4. Luisa Zirilli (MTSU) def. Samantha Smith (BYU) 6-2, 6-4

5. Marta Peris Herrero (MTSU) def. Taylah Beckman (BYU) 6-3, 6-2

6. Sarah Sediri (MTSU) def. Demi Perkinson (BYU) 6-4, 6-4

Doubles competition

1. Savannah Ware-Avina/Samantha Smith (BYU) def. Sarah Sediri/Luisa Zirilli (MTSU) 6-2 

2. Lidia Burrows/Constanza Magazzini (MTSU) def. Kate Cusick/Natella Nabieva (BYU) 7-5

3.  Maria Josefina Zehdner/ Marta Peris Herrero (MTSU) def. Taylah Beckman/Demi Perkinson (BYU) 6-4

Order of finish: Doubles (1,3,2); Singles (4,3,1,6,5,2)