Iowa State faces fierce competition on first day of ITA Fall Nationals



Miska Kadleckova hits the ball against Marquette on Jan. 24 in a 7-0 win for the Cyclones. (Photo Courtesy of Iowa State Athletic Communications)

Christian Royston

Iowa State tennis came out with one win on the first day of the ITA Fall Nationals on Thursday in San Diego, Calif.

Thasaporn Naklo started the day out for Iowa State against No. 55 Rebeka Mertena from Tennessee. Mertena took control in the first set with a 6-2 win. Naklo fired back in the second set with a 6-4 win to even up the match. Naklo fought hard in the third set but couldn’t overcome Mertena for a 6-7 loss in the tie-breaking set.

Iowa State’s first doubles team to play was Sofia Cabezas and Miska Kadleckova. They got down early, losing the first set against University of Alabama’s Anne Marie Hiser and Loudmilla Bencheikh 4-6. Cabezas and Kadleckova were able to battle through the second set and come out with a 7-6 win. The Iowa State duo came out victorious with a 10-4 win in the tiebreak.

Next, Iowa State’s Thasaporn Naklo and Christin Hsieh took the court against University of North Carolina’s Cameron Morra and Carson Tanguilig. The Tarheel duo started hot, taking the first set 6-3. Naklo and Hsieh returned strong going up 3-0 in the second set, but the No. 8 seed UNC team proved too much, taking the set 7-5.

Although the early losses hurt, the weekend is not over yet. Iowa State will play in the singles and doubles consolation rounds Friday. Cabezas and Kadleckova will also be competing in the round of 16 Friday.