The women’s tennis team had hoped to ride the energy of last week’s victory over rival George Washington into Saturday’s match at Pennsylvania, but the Owls could not build any momentum to propel them past the Quakers.
Temple fell hard to the two-time Ivy League Champions with a 7-0 loss at Levy Tennis Pavilion. The Owls (3-5, 1-0) lost to the No. 57 Quakers, who improved to 6-4.
Despite the loss, coaches and players said they are still optimistic about the remainder of the season.
“We’ve never been in better shape,” sophomore Jackie Sy said. “I think we have a good chance of winning the A-10s.”
For the Owls, the sentiment going into the match was the desire to beat a ranked team, but Penn’s early dominance made that nearly impossible.
The Quakers won each of Saturday’s three doubles matches and claimed the point in one of the singles matches as well. Even with strong singles play from Ana Maselesa and Laura Seiverling, the Owls could not overcome the early deficit.
Tina Sloan-Green, a member of the Temple women’s tennis Hall-of-Fame and coach Traci Green’s mother, praised the Owls’ efforts.
“They’ve improved a lot, and they’re competing well,” Sloan-Green said. “They just need to work on closing and being aggressive at the net during doubles.”
The Owls are a relatively young team. Lauren Verrall, the team’s only senior, plays No. 3 singles. Green said that allows her to prepare a solid group that will be used to playing together in the years to come.
Felicia Frazier, a recruit from Atlanta, came to the away match to cheer on her future team.
“I really like coach Green,” Frazier said. “She’s very dedicated to the team.”
Frazier, 17, chose Temple over Georgia State and Syracuse because of what she called “a good mix: academics and a great tennis team.”
The Owls begin a four-game homestand March 24 against Massachusetts. The match will mark the first time the teams have met since Feb. 20, 2004, when Temple lost, 3-4.
Danielle K. Milner can be reached at email@example.com.