KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — The 37th-ranked Razorback women’s tennis team got some help from the injury bug Sunday afternoon, but, nonetheless, scored the 4-3 win over 12th-ranked Tennessee in Knoxville. Arkansas benefited from injuries to two of Tennessee’s players which helped them enter singles play with a 2-1 lead after dropping the doubles point.
With the win, the Razorbacks up their win total to 10 for the year as they are now 10-7 with a 2-4 record in the SEC. Tennessee falls to 11-8 with also a 2-4 record in conference play. The win for Arkansas also breaks a two-match losing streak they had against the Lady Vols. Their last win against the foes from Knoxville, Tenn. came in the spring of 2009.
Doubles began the day and all courts started out like any other as all were neck-and-neck through the first few games. Midway through court two’s match, however, Tennessee’s 12th-ranked team of Brynn Boren and Sarah Toti were struck with an injury and forced to retired with the score tied at 4-all. By rule, the win will go to seniors Stephanie Roy and Emily Carbone as it was their team-leading 14th of the year and first over a ranked opponent.
The Razorbacks, as a team, now have three wins over ranked doubles opponents this season, the other two coming from the duo of sophomore Laurie Gingras and junior Claudine Paulson, who are 2-6 against ranked doubles teams.
The Lady Volunteers went on to salvage the doubles point anyway, regardless of the injury as they won at courts one and three to take the first team point of the day.
In singles, Tennessee was forced to default courts five and six because of injury also, which pushed Arkansas into the lead, 2-1, before the first serve even went up. Gingras, who normally plays at the No. 5 or No. 6 position moved up to No. 4 on Sunday and had a good first appearance in that spot. She defeated Jesse Grace in straight sets, 6-2, 6-1, for her 14th overall win this year, which ties her for tops on the team with Paulson.
Arkansas needed only one more singles match to earn the important fourth point and got exactly that from Roy, who defeated Joanna Henderson, also in straight sets, 6-2, 6-2. The win clinched it for the Razorbacks and was Roy’s ninth win of the year and sixth in dual play. The Canadian has now won three of her last four matches and has the most wins for any Razorback over that same four match span.
The Razorbacks return home for their next two matches against Ole Miss and Mississippi State, which will be played on Friday and Sunday respectively. Both matches are set to start at 1 p.m. and Sunday’s match will also be Senior Day for Stephanie Roy, Kate Lukomskaya and Emily Carbone. Senior Day ceremonies will start roughly 10 minutes prior to the start of the match.
#37 Arkansas 4
#12 Tennessee 3
Complete Doubles Results
Order of Finish: 2, 1, 3*
No. 1 #21 Natalie Pluskota/Kata Szekely (TENN) def. #75 Claudine Paulson/Laurie Gingras (ARK)
No. 2 Stephanie Roy/Emily Carbone (ARK) def. #12 Brynn Boren/Sarah Toti (TENN)
No. 3 Joanna Henderson/Jesse Grace (TENN) def. Kate Lukomskaya/Catherine Parenteau (ARK)
Complete Singles Results
Order of Finish: 5, 6, 4, 2, 3*, 1
No. 1 #25 Brynn Boren (TENN) def. Emily Carbone (ARK)
No. 2 #37 Kata Szekely (TENN) def. Claudine Paulson (ARK)
No. 3 Stephanie Roy (ARK) def. Joanna Henderson (TENN)
No. 4 Laurie Gingras (ARK) def. Jesse Grace (TENN)
No. 5 No player (ARK) def. No player (TENN)
No. 6 No player (ARK) def. No player (TENN)