The Lady Vols saw a fair share of success and defeat this week with a 4-1 victory against Missouri and a 4-0 loss to No. 7 Texas A&M at home this past weekend.
Tennessee took on Missouri on Friday night and saw wins in both doubles and singles play.
In doubles, UT's Joanna Henderson and Caitlyn Williams defeated Cierra Gayton-Leach and Rachel Stuhlmann, 8-4, and Eve Repic and Laurence Guevremont beat Madison Rhyner and Cassidy Spearman, 8-4.
In singles, Brittany Lindl defeated Cassidy Spearman, 6-1, 6-4, Victoria Olivarez beat Tracy Dong, 6-0, 6-1, and Laurence Guevremont saw more success, beating Madison Rhyner, 6-2, 6-1.
"All the kids stayed focused and they played hard," said co-head coach Mike Patrick on Friday following the Lady Vols' win. "They've been a strength for us the past couple of weeks. They did a great job against Kentucky and now here, so they're learning. Our freshmen are growing up, still have a lot of growing up to do, a lot of learning to do, but we're really proud of their effort."
Sunday's match against Texas A&M was the Lady Vols' first outdoor match at home this season and was a bit of a disappointment, producing results that were less than equivalent to the standard that the team envisions for itself, Patrick said.
Tennessee saw two losses in doubles play with Ambika Pande and Laurence Guevremont falling 8-2 to A&M's Ines Deheza and Saska Gavrilovska, and Brittany Lindl and Victoria Olivarez losing 8-3 to Anna Mamalat and Rutuja Bhosale.
"It's always a transition, and it's a shame it's our first outdoor match here against a good team, against an outdoor team, but we had some spots in which we competed well, and we had some that we didn't," Patrick said. "Some of the freshmen weren't quite prepared, had a little indoor feet, a little slow getting things going, but we finished up decent. We got competitive there in some spots, and I think we learned a lot."
The past weekend's matches bring Tennessee to a 9-10 overall record – 3-6 in conference play. While the team rejoiced in Friday's victory, it was the loss against A&M that provided younger players with knowledge essential for winning upcoming matches.
"We need all six people to show up every day, especially when you're playing a top-10 team, a finalist (in the) NCAA's last year; their experience showed," Patrick said. "We used this as a teaching moment and hopefully gained a lot out of it."
The Lady Vols will travel to Baton Rouge, La., this Friday to take on LSU, and then Arkansas on Sunday.
"It's a big match, a big weekend for us," Patrick admitted. "Both teams are teams that I think we can compete with well, but once again we've got to have everyone show up."