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Tuesday, February 27, 2024

In doubles action, they are dominant. In singles competition, they are stellar.

Juniors Megan Alexander and Marrit Boonstra continued exceptional play for the No. 7 Gators women in their 7-0 sweep of Western Michigan on Sunday.

The No. 18-ranked duo defeated the Broncos' Emily Dudzik and Yumi Matsuto 8-2. They have only dropped four of their 36 games played as a pair this season for UF (4-0).

In singles, the 5-foot-11 Boonstra faced a near mirror image of herself, in appearance if not skill. The No. 34 player beat Kerstin Pahl 6-4, 6-1.

"It doesn't happen a lot of times that someone is taller than me," she said of her 6-foot-1 opponent. "I liked her game. She tried to go to the net often. I like when people do that."

Alexander had equal success against Jenny Nalepa.

After a 3-3 score in the first set, Alexander rattled off nine straight games, rarely making a mistake.

"I made her play a lot of balls at the beginning," Alexander said. "She hung with me for the first little bit and after a while got tired of it and started making more errors."

Most of the day's action followed the same pattern, with the Broncos holding strong in the first few games only to be outworked by UF.

Coach Roland Thornqvist was impressed by his team's performance against the Broncos.

"I thought their attitude was really professional," he said. "They were classy, tough competitors.

They certainly didn't come in here intimidated. They were going to compete and give us everything they had."

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With the victory, the Gators advance to the third round of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Indoor Championship in Madison, Wis., beginning Feb. 12.

UF will host South Florida on Wednesday at 5 p.m.

Thornqvist hopes his team maintains the same intensity that got it past a game Western Michigan squad.

"(The Broncos) came in very business-like, no fear, and to the credit of our players, we continued to press on," he said.

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