Patel and Ouellet-Pizer, Friday doubles teammates, beat a Furman duo, 6-4, in the first doubles game of the weekend.
“I think our games complement each other," Patel said. "She’s comfortable in the back and I’m comfortable at the net, so I feel like that helps and we just always have fun.”
She believes their chemistry will grow as the season drags on.
“As the season goes on, I think we play better together," Patel said. "Over time I think we’ll get better as well."
Patel and Ouellet-Pizer have been playing together most of the fall season. The pair had actually already played against Furman earlier this fall and lost, so this was their chance to get revenge.
In the other doubles match on Friday, Sanford and Harmon fell, 6-2.
Patel, Ouellet-Pizer and Sanford racked up other wins on Friday as well to highlight the day's competition. Patel defeated Zoe Kulkarni from Maryland, 6-1, 6-1. Ouellet-Pizer pulled out a win against Katsiaryna Yemelyanenka from Maryland, 4-6, 6-1, 1-0.
To round out the competition, Sanford beat her Maryland opponent, 6-3, 6-1, while Harmon lost, 6-0, 6-1.
Saturday and Sunday
Sanford continued to play well into Saturday, defeating Martina Cappuro from Oklahoma, 6-3, 6-3. Sanford won two out of the three singles matches she played this weekend. Her teammates did not fare as well.
Patel lost, 5-7, 6-2, 1-0 (7), Ouellet-Pizer was defeated 6-0, 6-3 and Harmon fell, 6-3, 6-2, on Saturday. In doubles, duo Ouellet-Pizer and Harmon fell, 6-3, to Oklahoma. Teammates Sanford and Patel lost, 6-4, before head coach Brian Kalbas switched up the doubles teams again.
In the third and fourth matches of Saturday, Sanford and Harmon were defeated by Virginia, 8-6, while Patel and Harmon also fell to Virginia, 8-3.
On Sunday, no doubles matches were played. In singles, all four players lost. Patel lost, 6-2, 6-2, Ouellet-Pizer lost, 6-2, 6-2, Sanford lost, 7-6 (4), 6-3 and Harmon fell, 6-2, 6-2.
Although there were many losses for the Tar Heels this weekend, the players and Kalbas know that it was really about learning to play together.
“I definitely think all the players had great results this weekend," Kalbas said. "And it was just a good experience for everybody,” he said.
Following the tournament, the Tar Heels are nearing the break between fall and spring season. After the Oracle ITA National Fall Championship later this week, the team won't have another organized competition until January.
But they'll keep practicing before kicking off the spring against VCU on Jan. 26 in Chapel Hill.
“It’s always important to keep hitting,” Ouellet-Pizer said.
It's an attitude she and her teammates will carry heading into the spring.