Photo: Oklahoma University
Layne Sleeth wrapped up her impressive collegiate career with the Oklahoma Sooners in impressive fashion on Saturday by finishing as the runner-up in the 2023 NCAA Division I Women’s Singles Tennis Championship.
The native of Markham, Ontario, ranked no. 50 on the NCAA rankings, became the first Sooner to reach the prestigious title match in school history thanks to a five-match win streak through the draw and multiple Top 25 victories. In Saturday’s final, Sleeth fell to no. 14 ranked Fangran Tian of UCLA 6-4, 6-2 to close out her remarkable run.
In addition to being an NCAA singles runner-up, the 21-year-old senior is also a two-time All-American and was named the 2022 Big 12 Newcomer of the Year after transferring to Oklahoma from Florida. Sleeth is the first Canadian to play in the NCAA Singles National Championship final since Carol Zhao accomplished the feat in 2015 as a member of the Stanford Cardinal.
Sleeth achieved a career-best ITF junior ranking of no. 36 in January of 2018 while also competing in two junior Grand Slams, the Australian Open and the U.S. Open as well as the Orange Bowl.
Meanwhile, in the women’s doubles draw, Quebec’s Mélodie Collard advanced to the semifinals with her partner Julia Adams. The pair, playing for the University of Virginia, did not drop a set en route to the final four before falling 6-4, 7-6(3) to North Carolina’s Fiona Crawley and Carson Tanguilig.