Clarksville, TN – The Austin Peay State University (APSU) women’s tennis team kicks off its fall season, Friday morning with the APSU Fall invitational where it will host a trio of Ohio Valley Conference opponents in Belmont, UT Martin, and Southeast Missouri.
In 2019, a trio of Govs came away from the event with hardware as Martina Paladini-Jennings and APSU alumna Fabienne Schmidt each won their respective singles flights. Danielle Morris and Schmidt also took home the competition’s doubles crown.
This season, the Govs are a veteran-led squad with four seniors on the roster in Morris, Paladini-Jennings, Honoka Nakanishi, and Aleks Topalovic. The team also returns last season’s OVC Freshman of the Year and First Team All-OVC in Jana Leder.
In the Flight 1 Doubles, the Govs are represented by the team’s two German-born players in Leder and freshman Denise Torrealba. Leder finished her redshirt freshman campaign with 11-straight singles victories and had a team-best 12-2 record overall. She also collected eight wins in doubles, which is second among the Govs’ returning players. Torrealba joins the Govs after an impressive prep career where she was the 2020 Hessen U18 State Champion, 2019 U16 State Champion, and ranked as high as No. 733 in the ITF Junior Rankings.
Leder and Torrealba will represent the Govs in the Flight 1 Singles that begin at 9:00am, Friday at the Governors Tennis Courts.
Joining Leder and Torrealba in the Flight 1 Doubles is the pairing of Aleks Topalovic and Honoka Nakanishi. Last season, Topalovic won her final four OVC doubles matches en route to a 7-5 record. She also had nine wins in singles a season ago, tied for second of the Govs returning players. Nakanishi collected five wins in doubles in the spring and has an impressive 17-8 doubles record throughout her Austin Peay career.
Nakanishi will represent the Govs in the Flight 3 Singles at 9:00am, Friday at the Swan Lake Tennis Courts, while Topalovic competes in the Flight 2 Singles at the Governors Tennis Courts.
Senior Martina Paladini-Jennings and freshman Yu-Hua Cheng round out the Govs’ doubles lineups. While Paladini-Jennings has primarily served as a singles specialist throughout her career, the London native has a career doubles record of 6-2. Her 20 singles victories across two seasons at APSU are third among active players and is only one behind Topalovic’s 21.
The second of the APSU Govs’ two freshmen, Cheng prepped at Taipei Municipal Nangang Vocational High School in Taiwan and reached a career-high ITF Junior Ranking of No. 557. She and fellow freshmen Denise Torrealba look to impress in each of their collegiate debuts.
Paladini Jennings will compete in Flight 2 Singles, while Cheng will join Nakanishi in Flight 3 Singles at the Swan Lake Tennis Courts.
APSU First Round Matchups
Flight 1 Singles – Governors Tennis Courts
Denise Torrealba (APSU) vs Somer Henry (BEL)
Jana Leder (APSU) vs Amelia Campbell (UTM)
Flight 2 Singles – Governors Tennis Courts
Martina Paladini-Jennings (APSU) vs Aziza Aubin (UTM)
Aleks Topalovic (APSU) vs Vivi Lai (SEMO)
Flight 3 Singles – Swan Lake Tennis Courts
Yu-Hua Cheng (APSU) vs Lauren Carelli (BEL)
Honoka Nakanishi (APSU) vs Mizuki Sakurai (UTM)
Flight 1 Doubles – Governors Tennis Courts
Leder/Torrealba (APSU) vs Solomon/Zholdakova (BEL)
Topalovic/Nakanishi (APSU) vs Skikanova/Valeeva (SEMO)
Flight 2 Doubles – Governors Tennis Courts
Cheng/Paladini-Jennings (APSU) vs Azubin/Ondo (UTM)