Club Sports: Tennis beats out half of competition at Hilton Head Invitational

Top left to right: Jay Latimer, Colin Melford and Martin Porebski stand behind teammates Alyssa Migliorini, VIctoria Ho and Jessica DeRoberti at the USTA Tennis on Campus Fall Invitational in Hilton Head, South Carolina. (Courtesy/Jay Latimer)

The University of Connecticut club tennis team traveled to Hilton Head, South Carolina last weekend to compete in the United States Tennis Association (USTA) Tennis  on Campus Fall Invitational, finishing 21st overall out of 48 teams.

This had been the Huskies’ second consecutive year at the Fall Invitational, which is the first tournament in the Tennis on Campus series for the 2015-16 club season. The tournament, which first took place in 2010, hosts some of the best club tennis teams in the country, including back-to-back defending champions University of Florida as well as Duke University, University of Georgia, Boston College and University of Virginia. 

After coming in second in the round robin group stage, the team made it into the silver bracket on the second day of the tournament, an improvement from last year when the Huskies made it into the bronze bracket. Despite a rough start on the second day, UConn fought hard before eventually falling to Vanderbilt University in the silver bracket’s fifth-place match.

“We may have been able to do better, but we got off to a rough start in the first round,” club captain Jay Latimer said. “We found our groove, however, in the later matches and played well as a team throughout the rest of the tournament.”

Alyssa Migliorini was one of the standout performers for the Huskies, showing consistency throughout the invitational, often outlasting her opponents and dominating some sets.
“In particular, she won her singles set against Vanderbilt 6-1, although we lost that match as a team,” Latimer said.

Another big performance came from the captain himself, who had to step into a doubles match for a player having medical issues. Latimer and partner Martin Porebski ended up winning a shortened set against Furman 4-1. 

This year’s Fall Invitational champion was Georgia, which defeated Boston College 24-15. Back-to back-defending champion Florida defeated Cornell in the overall fifth-place match by a score of 26-17. Washington-St. Louis came out victorious in the silver bracket, beating Duke 25-22. The bronze bracket final was a close one, in which LSU defeated Georgia College 24-23. Other bracket champions were Harvard from the copper bracket and Villanova from the fun bracket.

“It's great playing against teams from other parts of the country,” Latimer said of the team’s time in Hilton Head. “We also made new friends and had a great time off the court.”


Chris Hanna is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at christopher.hanna@uconn.edu.