MADISON, Wisc. – Even with a strong performance by junior Aurelija Miseviciute in singles, the 39th-ranked University of Arkansas Lady Razorbacks were unable to stave off No. 8 Southern California in a 4-3 loss at the Intercollegiate Tennis Association National Team Indoor Championship.
“This was a great match, and although the loss we showed great signs of improvement today,” said Lady’Back head coach Michael Hegarty.
Arkansas will resume action at the National Indoor Championship on Friday at 9 a.m.
The Lady’Backs fell behind, 1-0, early after losing the doubles point; however, Arkansas zoomed into singles action with a burst of energy.
The No. 1 ranked women’s player in collegiate tennis, Miseviciute, got her team going with a 6-3, 6-0, straight set victory over USC’s Lindsey Nelson, knotting things up at one. Two-time Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Week, Anouk Tigu, continued her undefeated season after dropping Sarah Fanselr 6-2, 6-4, thus giving the Lady’Backs the lead, 2-1.
Arkansas’ other superb freshman, Delia Damaschin, blasted No. 78 ranked Gabriela Niculescu, 7-6(4), 6-2, giving the Lady’Backs a two point cushion with three matches to go.
Unfortunately, Damaschin’s win would be the last win for Arkansas during Thursday’s match as USC reeled off three straight singles wins providing the final score.
Maria Sanchez pulled off a comeback win over senior Audrey Bordeleau, 1-6, 6-2, 6-1, cutting Arkansas’ lead to one point. The match became all squared again at three when USC’s Leyla Entekhabi dropped Nanar Airapetian, 6-4, 6-4.
The match clincher came when No. 51 Amanda Fink defeated Ela Kaluder, 7-6(4), 6-2, in a close match.
In arguably the closest and toughest match the Lady’Backs have played all season, Hegarty is excited about seeing his team compete hard again on Friday.
“My girls gave it there all today, and watching them improve against a tough team like USC excites me to see how we can improve in the finals days of this tournament.”
For immediate results of tomorrow’s consolation match, be sure to stick to LADYBACKS.COM.
#8 Southern California-4
1. #5 Gabriela Niculescu/Amanda Fink (USC) def. Maryori Franco/Nanar Airapetian (UA) 8-5.
2. Lindsey Nelson/Maria Sanchez (USC) def. Aurelija Miseviciute/Ela Kaluder (UA) 8-1.
3. Audrey Bordeleau/Anouk Tigu (UA) def. Leyla Entekhabi/Sarah Finsler (USC) 7-6 (DNF).
Match Notes: Order of Finish (2,1*,3)
1. #1 Aurelija Miseviciute (UA) def. Lindsey Nelson (USC) 6-3, 6-0.
2. #51 Amanda Fink (USC) def. Ela Kaluder (UA) 7-6(7), 6-4.
3. Anouk Tigu (UA) def. Sarah Fansler (USC) 6-2, 6-4.
4. Delia Damaschin (UA) def. Gabriela Niculescu (USC) 7-6(4), 6-2.
5. Maria Sanchez (USC) def. Audrey Bordeleau (UA) 1-6, 6-2, 6-1.
6. Leyla Entekhabi (USC) def. Nanar Airapetian (UA) 6-4, 6-4.
Match Notes: Order of Finish (1,3,4,5,6,2*)