Tennis teams fall to Tulane

Led by their No. 1 players, both USF tennis teams turned their share of heads this weekend at the Conference USA Tournaments.

In Fort Worth, Texas, the No. 51 USF women’s tennis team salvaged a third-place finish after falling to No. 16 Tulane in the semifinals.

The men upset No. 75 Memphis in the quarterfinals, but lost to No. 19 Tulane 4-1 in the semifinals.

Tulane went on to win both the women’s and men’s C-USA Tournament titles.

In Sunday’s third-place consolation match versus Houston, the women, who were without a sixth player, took four of five singles matches and grinded out a 4-3 victory. Houston won two points by default.

USF No. 1 Neyessa Etienne had the most successful showing, winning all her matches and defeating Tulane’s Maria Ivanov, who is ranked 124th in the country. Etienne, a senior, is ranked 66th.

The men’s team dominated a favored Memphis team in the quarterfinals, taking five of the six singles matches.

The men’s No. 1 player, Uli Kiendl, came in as USF’s only ranked player (79) and won all his matches. He was also the only Bulls player to win versus Tulane.

Coaches Gigi Fernandez and Don Barr could not be reached for comment.

This weekend’s action was the last for the Bulls in C-USA, as they move to the Big East next year.