Over the course of the past few weeks, the USF women’s tennis team has struggled to find a victory. With multiple injuries, the team has been shuffling players through different positions to try to scrap out a win, often unsuccessfully.
Saturday was no different.
A banged-up team fought with Boston University (11-5) but fell 4-2 at the USF Varsity Tennis Courts in the Bulls’ final home match of the season.
“It is so hard to compete at our best with all of the injuries,” said Bulls coach Agustin Moreno. “It was a very close match, though, and we had opportunities to win.”
After winning two of three matches to claim the doubles point, the Bulls (6-11) faltered in singles, getting only one win from Irene Rehberger in the No. 1 position. She improved her record to 10-1 on the season with a 6-3, 6-1 victory over Boston’s Francine Whu.
Injuries to USF’s top players caught up with the team. Senior Iciri Rai, who had been playing a majority of her matches in the No. 2 position, broke her wrist in the Bulls’ win against UCF on March 25.
The Bulls were also without sophomore Jessica Sweeting, who had played in the No. 2 position as well. She’s out for the season with a lingering back injury.
Rounding out the trio of inured players is sophomore Janette Bejlkova, who has been out all season with an ankle injury.
Moreno has been forced to put girls into different playing positions. Freshmen Christine Wilson and Inna Chepurnaya have received a boost in playing time that they wouldn’t have otherwise seen.
Moreno said it’s good to give others a chance to experience these positions.
“I’m very optimistic of how our team will look in the future,” he said.