Florida women’s tennis sophomore Sara Dahlstrom had the heavy task of entering her first major competition of the fall season just as the schedule drew to a close.
She definitely rose to the occasion, weathering the competition at the UNF Invitational this past weekend as Florida tennis won nine singles matches in their final event of the calendar year.
Dahlstrom went 3-0 in singles play and teamed with freshman Bente Spee to pick up a doubles victory.
The first opponent Dahlstrom overpowered in singles play was Tulane’s Jiayun Zhu with a score of 6-2, 6-1. Dahlstrom and Spee faced Tulane doubles pair Kristen Borland and Mackenzie Clark the same day. But the Green Wave would be silenced once again by a dominant performance from the Gators duo as they won the match, 6-3.
Spee and Dahlstrom lost their second doubles match of the first day against Samantha Buyckx and Cristina Mayorova of Clemson, 6-4.
On the following day of the competition, Dahlstrom easily defeated Alexandria Mjos from South Florida, 6-0, 6-3. On the last day of the competition, Dahlstrom took down another in-state rival, Florida State’s Alice Amendola, 6-0, 7-5.
While the sophomore caught fire in her final fall appearance for Florida, freshman Alicia Dudeney improved her fall singles record to 11-2 with victories against Lahari Yelamanchili of Tulane, 7-5, 6-4 and the Seminoles’ Lesedi Jacobs, 7-5, 6-2. She defeated a familiar competitor for the Gators this season in Nandini Sharma of UCF 6-2, 6-4.
Junior Emma Shelton made some noise in the singles and doubles competition in Jacksonville with a hard-fought win against the Tigers’ Mayorova, 6-3, 3-6, 6-4, improving her singles record to 8-3.
The Gators now head into an extended break with their sights set on team competitions in the spring.
“There's little doubt we have improved significantly from the first day of and we all look forward to beginning the team portion in January," head coach Roland Thornqvist said about the end of the fall season according to a release.
The Gators open up the spring portion of their season in January 2022 at the Freeman Memorial Championships in Las Vegas.
Contact Brenda Bogle at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @bogle_brenda.
Brenda Bogle is a UF journalism senior with a specialization in sports and media. She joined The Alligator in the Fall of 2021.