The UST Lady Tennisters outplay the NU Bulldogs, 3-1, to take Game 1 of the best-of-three UAAP Season 86 women's tennis finals at the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex on Wednesday, April 3. (Photo by Jeremy R. Edera / The Varsitarian)

THE UST Female Tennisters mauled the defending champions NU Bulldogs, 3-1, in Game 1 of their best-of-three finals series of the UAAP Season 86 women’s tennis tournament at the Rizal Memorial Tennis Court on Wednesday, April 3.

UST handed the Bulldogs their first loss of the season and moved one step closer to their first title in six years.

“First time matalo ang NU sa buong UAAP season so symepre anong ma-fe-feel namin? Sobrang saya,” UST head coach Dennis Sta. Cruz told the Varsitarian. “Flattered pa rin pero hindi pa tapos e […] for the meantime, enjoy muna namin ‘yong pagka 1-0.”

Alex Santos drew first blood for UST after dominating NU’s JM Carcueva, 6-3, 6-1.

UST standout rookie Kaye Emana survived a tight 7-5, 7-6 triumph over Elsie Abarquez.

However, Female Tennisters Debbie Gom-os and Miles Vitaliano faltered against NU’s tandem of Alliah Ragunton and Alyssa Bornia, 6-2, 6-4.

The other UST duo of Minette Bentillo and Justine Maneja sealed the deal for UST after a 6-2, 6-4 thrashing of Bulldogs Angela Cabaral and Rovie Baulete before having the third singles match between Patricia Lim and Danna Abad abandoned at 6-2, 2-3 in favor of Lim.

UST will look to close the series at the same venue on Saturday, April 6, at 7:30 a.m.