KNOXVILLE, Tn- The Royals women's tennis team picked up a historic first victory in the AAC conference on Saturday when they defeated the Bluefield University Rams on the Johnson University courts.
The match of the day for the Royals was a dramatic comeback victory at the number one singles spot from freshman Paola Testa. Testa began the match on the defensive, dropping the first set 6-2 in what looked to be a tough day. Testa was able to regroup at the set changeover and jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the 2nd. Her opponent would not be easily beaten as they would continue to battle back and forth until Testa came out on top 6-4. Tied at one set all, Testa was able to raise her game in the 10-point tiebreak, jumping out to a large lead and never looking back, winning by a score of 10-2. The Royals overall would win by a score of 5-2.
This victory is the first win for the Royals in the AAC, the first win of the spring, and their seventh win overall. Not only does this historically mark the first win in the AAC but also the most wins earned in a season in Royals history. "This is a really big moment in our program's history as we have both set a record for wins and have earned the first conference win. Especially this early in the season, this is quite an accomplishment," Coach Hale said. "Our opponents were a bit short-handed today but I think that really speaks to the longevity of our program. If it weren't for lots of players coming out and giving us a chance in the recruiting process or deciding that they would try something new and throw themselves at tennis, we wouldn't be here today. I'm really proud of this program and proud of the players that make it up. Despite the big milestones, we definitely aren't satisfied and I'm excited to see how we can continue to build this year."
The Royals will return to action on 3/2 at home against another AAC opponent, Milligan University.