Longhorns claim share of Big 12 regular season title

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Photo Credit: Katie Bauer | Daily Texan Staff

After defeating Iowa State and West Virginia in this weekend’s set of matches, the Longhorns took home the Big 12 regular season title.

No. 5 Texas dominated its unranked opponents this weekend en route to its first Big 12 regular season title since 2007.

On Friday afternoon, the Longhorns played their first match against Iowa State (9–13, 0–6 Big 12) without their star sophomore No. 1 Bianca Turati. However, after starting the match with a win at the doubles point, the Longhorns went on to dominate with three straight singles wins from senior Dani Wagland, freshman Marta Perez-Mur and sophomore Petra Granic to give the Longhorns their 12th-straight win, and 17th on the season.

“For a coach, when we decided that we were going to go ahead and play without Bianca Turati, it was a little anxiety-provoking,” head coach Howard Joffe said. “Yet, I did feel confident in the strength of the team and trusted that the girls would band together and do a good job.”

The second win of the weekend came Sunday afternoon against West Virginia. The day began with a win at the doubles point, which included an appearance, and win, from the Turati twins who haven’t played together since November of 2016. Not long after, Texas put together three straight singles wins to defeat the Mountaineers, claiming their 13th-straight win, and a guaranteed share of the Big 12 regular season title.

“We played and performed a little bit better than we did against Iowa State. That was encouraging,” Joffe said. “The thing that overshadows all of this is the prize to win here, to win a share of the conference. I think that was what was on everyone’s mind. I am very proud and very happy for this team.”

The Longhorns can win the Big 12 regular season title outright with a win over Baylor this Friday, a feat they haven’t completed since 2004.

“It’s a great moment because just two years ago, the team only had four or five scholarship players and we were struggling mightily,” Joffe said. “So, at two-and-a-half years later to be hoisting that trophy feels very good for the players who got it done in such a quick amount of time.”