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Tennis Teams Win Conference Titles, Qualify for NCAA Tournaments

The women’s tennis team captured its first American Southwest Conference championship since 2013 by defeating East Texas Baptist University in the title match on Saturday. The Comets hosted the conference tournament for the first time in team history.

The University of Texas at Dallas women’s and men’s tennis teams are American Southwest Conference (ASC) champions, each for the first time in six years, and will both travel to Claremont, California, to play in the NCAA Division III national championships.

It is the second conference title for each program, and both teams will begin NCAA tournament play on Friday.

The women’s team (11-1) beat East Texas Baptist University 5-2 in the ASC title match last Saturday at home. Frida Muedsam, a freshman from Plano West Senior High School, earned tournament MVP honors, going unbeaten in both singles and doubles. Sumvruta Iyengar, Kathy Joseph and Sindhu Ravula joined her as all-tournament selections.

The women will face Linfield College (17-2) in a first-round matchup, with the winner advancing to take on the regional host, second-ranked Claremont-Mudd-Scripps (23-1).

The men’s team (16-1) avenged its lone loss of the season, topping Concordia University Texas 5-1 in the final on April 27 in Longview. Ashwin Vaithianathan was named MVP of the event and was joined by Brandon Giordanelli, Haydn Steffes and Giovanni Zamboni on the all-tournament squad.

The men will play top-ranked Claremont-Mudd-Scripps (29-1) in a second-round matchup.

Bryan Whitt, who coaches both Comets tennis teams, noted that the men’s squad’s experience in three previous ASC tournament finals against UT Tyler proved crucial.

“We’ve been in a bunch of finals the last several years, so we knew what it was about,” he said. “Concordia had a historic season and gave us a great fight in the finals.”

The other members of the men’s tennis team are: Eric Chen, Jeremiah DeLuna, Mason Gillespie, Mario Jelev, Luis Navarro, Vishnu Petluru, Josh Rivera, Zach Tavallaee and Mauro Tejada.

The other members of the women’s tennis team are: Sophie Farmer, Svaksha Iyengar, Stephanie Joseph, Elizabeth Labra, Adrienne Large, Priyal Patel, Stephanie Royer, JoLynn Scriven, Vivian Sepulveda and Simmone Spielmann.

Ashwin Vaithianathan (left) leads a celebration as teammates surround Mario Jelev after the Comets clinched the American Southwest Conference men’s tennis championship on April 27. The Comets will take an eight-match winning streak into Friday’s NCAA Division III national championship tournament.

Media Contact: Bruce Unrue, UT Dallas Athletics, (972) 883-6308, [email protected], or the Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].