UF WTN: Florida Finishes Play at Kitty Harrison Invitational

Gators Tennis closed out the Kitty Harrison Invitational earlier today with 15 combined victories. The UNC hosted tournament marks their official start to the 2023-24 season.

CHAPEL HILL, NC – Florida opened their tennis season at the three-day invitational hosted by the 2023 NCAA Champions, University of North Carolina. The Kitty Harrison Invitational consisted of three rounds of doubles, and four rounds of singles stretching from Friday (9/15) to Sunday (9/17). Overall, the Gators came out of Chapel Hill with a combined 15 victories.

Wrapping up the Invitational, the Gators had two singles contests and three doubles matchups this morning (9/17). In singles, Rachel Gailis defeated the ninth ranked newcomer of the year, Valeria Ray (Vanderbilt) 6-4, 4-6, 10-6. Malwina Rowinska also competed in the singles draw today, but had a more challenging matchup, ultimately falling to 101 ranked Dani Medvedeva (Clemson) 6-1, 6-2.

In the double’s category, the Gators won two of their three courts, with freshman duo Rowinska and Lopez showing up once more in an 8-4 victory against Charlotte’s Lucia Aranda and Lucie Petruzelova. Bente Spee and partner Emily De Oliveira also secured a win for Florida defeating Auburn’s Jenna Thompson and Ava Esposito Cogan 8-7 in a hard-fought battle.

After winning their previous two doubles contests at the Kitty Harrison Invitational, Briggs and Gailis couldn’t hold on against second ranked Reese Brantmeier and Elizabeth Scotty (UNC), falling 8-2.

Leading the team this weekend was Rachel Gailis with five total wins- three in the singles draw and two alongside doubles partner Carly Briggs. Following closely with a combined four wins was freshman Qavia Lopez, securing two in the singles category and two in the doubles draw with Malwina Rowinska.

Lopez reflects, “it felt great to finally get to compete as a gator, it’s been something I’ve been looking forward to since I committed. It was super cool to have the support of a team and a coach on court, it’s unlike any junior or pro tournament I’ve played in before. Overall it was a great experience, and I was able to get some good wins in singles and doubles. I’m really looking forward to the rest of the fall tournaments and especially the start of conference play!”

Rachel Gailis def. Valeria Ray (Vanderbilt) 6-4, 4-6, 10-6
Dani Medvedeva (Clemson) def. Malwina Rowinska 6-1, 6-2

Rachel Gailis/Carly Briggs def. Holly Staff/Valeria Ray (Vanderbilt) 8-5
Qavia Lopez/Malwina Rowinska def. Lucia Aranda/Lucie Petruzelova (Charlotte) 8-4
Bente Spee/Emily De Oliveira def. Jenna Thompson/Ava Esposito Cogan (Auburn) 8-7


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