Noel Falls in Championship Match, 4 Hawkeyes win at Wildcat Invite

CHARLESTON, S.C. — University of Iowa sophomore Alexa Noel fell in the championship of the ITA All-American Tournanent on Sunday at the LTP Tennis Club. The All American, ranked No. 12 Nationally, battled against top newcomer Sarah Hamner of South Carolina.

Noel fell in the first set, 6-0, but the New Jersey native fought back to take the second set, 6-3, to force a third set. In the final set, Noel retired due to injury, allowing Hamner to get the win.

At the final day of the Wildcat Invite, Vipasha Mehra/Samantha Mannix defeated Marquette’s Desmarias/Ferdman, 6-1. Samantha Gillas/Michelle Bacalla fell to UIC’s Gustaffson/Jover, 6-2.

In singles action, all four Hawkeyes ended the tournament with a victory. Mannix won in straight sets (6-3, 6-4), as well as Bacalla (6-3, 7-6). Gillas ended the tournament with a three-set win (0-6, 6-3, 6-4), as well as Mehra (3-6, 6-2, 10-6).

“It was a weekend of matches and match play that is always good for us,” said head coach Sasha Schmid. “Especially in the fall when we must get back to competing, so it’s something we can definitely build on. We have a lot of great opportunities ahead of us, especially with regionals coming up in two weeks at home. We need to take what we learn from here and have a good 10-day stretch of practice to get ready for regionals.”

Iowa hosts ITA Regionals on Oct. 21-25, at the Hawkeye Tennis & Recreation Complex in Iowa City. Admission is free to the public.