Akli Finishes Fall Season as National Runner-Up
San Diego, Calif. – South Carolina women’s tennis graduate Ayana Akli finished the fall tennis season as the national runner-up at the ITA National Fall Championships. Akli defeated four opponents in straight sets en route to the title match and concludes fall play with a 10-4 record.
In Sunday’s title match, Akli faced No. 5 Reese Brantmeier of North Carolina. The match was a tight battle with three sets being needed for the decision.
The Gamecock looked strong in the first set, taking it 6-2, but was slowed down in the second set after a slip on the court caused some evident pain. Akli battled through but Brantmeier was able to use Akli’s injury to her advantage, claiming the second set 6-2.
In the deciding set, things were tight with neither player willing to give up a break until late in the set when the Tar Heel was finally able to break Akli at 5-5. While up 6-5, Brantmeier was able to serve out the win to claim the title in three sets.
Akli is the first Gamecock to ever play in the title match of the National Fall Championships, surpassing Megan Davies who had advanced to the semifinals of the event in 2019.
The conclusion of the event marks the end of the fall tennis season for South Carolina. The Gamecocks will be back in action in the fall for dual play. The team’s schedule will be released in the coming weeks.
For all the latest South Carolina women’s tennis information, continue to follow GamecocksOnline.com or the team on social media (@GamecockWTennis).
ITA National Fall Championship Results
(5) Reese Brantmeier (NC) def. (7) Ayana Akli (SC) 2-6, 6-2, 7-5