It’s an uncommon sight to see when someone competes for Michigan with no other team members around.
For 19th-ranked senior Ronit Yurovsky, she had to do just that in the inaugural Oracle/ITA Masters tournament. She was the lone Wolverine representing the Michigan women’s tennis team in Malibu, California, to start off the season. Yurovsky was unable to find success, losing in the first round of the championship and consolation bracket.
“Result-wise, I wish (this weekend) went a little bit better,” Yurovsky said. “Playing-wise, I feel pretty good out on the court. It was the first tournament back. I think I struggled a bit with confidence because I haven’t played that many matches (over the summer). Just looking ahead, I think this weekend was good just to get me back into competing again.”
Yurovsky faced ninth-ranked Hayley Carter of North Carolina in the first round. Carter put the pressure on early, jumping to a 4-0 lead. Yurovsky was able to roar back, taking the next three games to cut Carter’s lead to 4-3. But her efforts weren’t enough, as Carter was able to take two of the next three games and the set, 6-4.
The next set was more evenly played, but ultimately Carter prevailed. The two split the first eight games, 4-4. Yurovsky would go on to win two of the next three, putting her in position to win the set. However, Carter was able to force a tiebreaker and eventually won the set and match, 7-6.
In the consolation round on the second day of the tournament, Yurovsky faced off against Vanderbilt’s 14th-ranked Astra Sharma. In the first set, each player took turns winning two games in a row until they had four games apiece.
Yurovsky didn’t win another game in that set as Sharma closed out for a 6-4 win. In the second set, Sharma won five of the first six games. Yurovsky tried to make up the deficit, but came up short, losing 6-4 and ending her stint in the tournament.
“Hayley (Carter) was tough. She’s a really good player and so is Astra (Sharma),” Yurovsky said. “Everyone’s good there. It’s the top 16 players, so you’re not gonna get a bad match. I just focused on having that belief, that confidence that I could win the match, but I just couldn’t pull it out in the important points.”
This tournament, in its inaugural year, was uncharted territory for the lone senior, especially since she had no teammates competing with her.
Yurovsky will have plenty of time to regroup and prepare for her next competition, but will need to get used to being the only Wolverine present when she heads to the ITA All-American tournament on October 8.
“I’m a little bummed this weekend didn’t go as planned, but I’m excited because I knew I was playing well,” Yurovsky said. “I’m glad I got two matches under my belt, so going into All-Americans, I’m back into the swing of things.”