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Sun Devils Sweep Rice in Argyrokastriti’s Return

Mar 26, 2022

TEMPE, Ariz. – Back for the first time in six weeks after being sidelined by an ankle injury, Marianna Argyrokastriti's return to the Sun Devils' starting lineup was a welcomed one.

In her first game action since February 12, the Sun Devils pulled off a clean and efficient 4-0 sweep against Rice on Saturday afternoon at the Whiteman Tennis Center. Domenika Turkovic sealed it on Court 2, defeating the Owls' Anastasia Smirnova in straight sets, 6-4, 7-5.

The Sun Devils (9-6, 1-4) win on Saturday gives Sheila McInerney 549 career wins in her illustrious 38-year career.

Though the Sun Devils breezed through singles play, they certainly had to wrestle for the lone doubles point. After picking up a win on Court 2 and dropping a match moments later on Court 3, Court 1 was locked in a tough one. It was a battle of nationally-ranked duos between No. 26 Patricija Spaka & No. 25 Diae El Jardi & Maria Budin.

Despite a last-ditch comeback effort by the Owls, Spaka and Turkovic were able to put them away to clinch the doubles point, winning 7-5.

Now just needing to win three of the next singles matches, the Sun Devils wasted little time in getting there. Five of six first sets went ASU's way and all would be decided in straight sets.

Cali Jankowski picked up her 11th singles win of the season, which ties her with Spaka for the team lead, by blowing past Allison Zipoli, 6-3, 6-2. With Argyrokastriti sidelined, Jankowski had occupied Court 4 for the past six weeks and is making a living there.

She's 7-1 on Court 4 this season and a winner of six straight matches.

Sedona Gallagher made quick work of Anna Bowtell, 6-3, 6-3 and Turkovic clinched it not long after. It was a much-needed win for the Sun Devils, who are nearing full-strength again for the first time since mid-February.

1. Morlet,Giulia (ASU) vs. Federica Trevisan (RICE) 2-6, 5-3, unfinished
2. Turkovic,Domenika (ASU) def. Anastasia Smirnova (RICE) 6-4, 7-5 
3. Sedona Gallagher (ASU) def. Anna Bowtell (RICE) 6-3, 6-3 
4. Jankowski,Cali (ASU) def. Allison Zipoli (RICE) 6-3, 6-2 
5. Patricija Spaka (ASU) vs. Maria Budin (RICE) 6-4, 5-2, unfinished 
6. Argyrokastriti,M (ASU) vs. Saara Orav (RICE) 6-2, 3-5, unfinished 

1. Patricija Spaka/Turkovic,Domenika (ASU) def. Diae El Jardi/Maria Budin (RICE) 7-5 
2. Sedona Gallagher/Morlet,Giulia (ASU) def. Anastasia Smirnova/Allison Zipoli (RICE) 6-3 
3. Saara Orav/Federica Trevisan (RICE) def. Argyrokastriti,M/Jankowski,Cali (ASU) 6-3 

Saturday's win marked the first of a brief three-match homestand. The Sun Devils will host two conference foes this week, with Cal (Friday, April 1, 1:30 p.m.) and Stanford (Saturday, April 2, 12 p.m.) coming to town.

The Whiteman Tennis Center will be the place to be this week as the Sun Devils will attempt to gift McInerney her 550th career win in front of a home crowd.