The North Carolina women’s tennis team opened its 2023 fall slate this weekend, hosting the Kitty Harrison Invitational at the Chewning Tennis Center, in which UNC won two of the singles pools and one of the doubles pools against a strong field of opponents.
Play began on Friday morning and finished early Sunday afternoon. The Tar Heels welcomed Auburn, UNC Charlotte, Clemson, Duke, Flordia, N.C. State, Old Dominion, Penn State, Vanderbilt, and Wisconsin to Chapel Hill to start the season.
Over the course of the weekend, UNC picked up singles victories in two of the three singles pools. In the “navy” pool, No. 1 seed sophomore Reese Brantmeier, solidified her victory on Sunday morning when she won her final match against Selin Ovunc of Auburn. Brantmeier lost the first set 2-6 but came back to win 6-4 and 6-3 in the final two sets to win the pool.
Brantmeier begins her second season as a Tar Heel with a No. 5 national ranking in the preseason ITA singles tennis poll. Only one of her teammates, senior Fiona Crawley ranks above her in the singles poll at the No. 1 spot. Crawley did not participate in the event this weekend but made headlines earlier this month following her run at the U.S. Open.
In the “white” pool, No. 1 seed junior, Carson Tanguilig dominated her final match against No. 3 seed Bridget Stammel of Vanderbilt winning in just two sets, 6-1, 7-5.
The final singles pool, designated “blue,” was the only to not end with a Tar Heel as the champion. On Saturday, UNC senior No. 4 seed Reilly Tran lost to Duke’s Katie Codd in the semifinals. Eventually, No. 3 seed Abigail Rencheli of N.C. State emerged victorious in the pool.
In doubles, one pair of Tar Heels came out victorious while another lost in a tight battle to a team from Auburn.
UNC’s entry into the “ram” doubles pool consisted of Tran and first-year Thea Rabman, a blue-chip recruit from New York, but the duo lost early on to opponents from Old Dominion.
In the “heel” pool, Tanguilig, a 2023 NCAA doubles champion alongside Crawley, was paired with senior Anika Yarlagadda. They battled it out against a pair from Auburn early Sunday morning in the final match. Despite a close match, the team eventually fell 7-8.