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Friday, May 17, 2013

North Carolina and UCLA Down Big Ten Foes to Set Up Rematch of Team Indoor Final

©Colette Lewis 2013--
Urbana, IL--

No. 2 seed North Carolina went to bed without knowing who they would be playing in Sunday's quarterfinal, but when the Tar Heels wake up Saturday morning, they will see they've got a rematch of the thrilling Team Indoor final with the No. 7 UCLA Bruins.

North Carolina earned their way into the quarterfinals three hours before UCLA did, with the Tar Heels defeating No. 15 seed Nebraska 4-1 on the Khan Outdoor Center's south courts.

After taking the doubles point, the Tar Heels took four first sets in singles from the Cornhuskers, who were making their first Sweet 16 appearance in program history.  But Nebraska pulled even with a 6-4, 6-1 win by Stefanie Weinstein at line 3, and got a boost when Mary Weatherholt took the second set from Gina Suarez-Malaguti at line 1.

But once Lauren McHale took a tough second set at No. 5, the Tar Heels found additional energy, and victories by Caroline Price at 4 and Kate Vialle at 6 came quickly on the heels of McHale's win.

"When Lauren won her second set tiebreaker, it kind of got us over the hump a little bit," said North Carolina head coach Brian Kalbas. "Then Caroline did a very good job of closing her second set out, and then Kate, it was tight, three all in the second, and she won the last three games. So I thought once Lauren won that close second set, we got a little more momentum and closed the matches out."

Kalbas admitted he would not be staying to see who his team would play on Sunday, with the UCLA and Michigan match not even begun on the North courts, when his team had claimed their victory.

"We've played both those teams and we know them pretty well, so I think I need some rest," said Kalbas, who went on to praise the effort of the Cornhuskers. "I give them a lot of credit. They're very well coached, they're a high class operation and I respect what Scott (Jacobson) and Hayden (Perez) have done with that program. They've gotten better, and made the Team Indoor and the round of 16. They competed very well and gave us a huge battle."
No. 2 North Carolina 4,  No. 15 Nebraska 1
7 p.m. CT – South Courts
1. #11 Mary Weatherholt (NEB) vs. #7 Gina Suarez-Malaguti (UNC)  3-6, 6-1, 3-2*
2. #49 Zoe De Bruycker (UNC) vs. Patricia Veresova (NEB)  1-6, 6-1, 1-1*
3. Stefanie Weinstein (NEB) def. #39 Whitney Kay (UNC)  6-4, 6-1   
4. #46 Caroline Price (UNC) def. Janine Weinreich (NEB)  7-6(2), 6-2
5. Lauren McHale (UNC) def. Maggy Lehmicke (NEB)  6-0, 7-6(0)
6. Kate Vialle (UNC) def. Izabella Zgierska (NEB)  6-1, 6-3

1. #58 Price/Kay (UNC) vs. #3 Weatherholt/Veresova (NEB)  7-6*
2. McHale/Dai (UNC) def. Weinstein/Weinreich (NEB)  8-2
3. Suarez-Malaguti/Lyons (UNC) def. Lehmicke/Zgierska (NEB)  8-3

Order of Finish: Doubles (2,3); Singles (3,5,4,6)
* = unfinished

Once the UCLA Bruins finally took the court Friday evening, at 11:30 p.m., they were able to do what the other three winners on the North Courts could not: post a victory in less than three hours.  After a long and seesaw doubles point went to the Bruins, they took control in singles, posting a 4-0 victory over Michigan in a match that ended just prior to 2 a.m.

Courtney Dolehide gave UCLA its second point with a quick 6-1, 6-0 win over Kristen Dodge at line 6, and with four of the five first sets that were decided, the Bruins were in good shape.

Robin Anderson at line 1 and Kyle McPhillips at line 2 did the honors, with McPhillips giving UCLA point number three with a 6-1, 6-2 win over Ronit Yurovsky, and just moments later, Anderson broke Emina Bektas to earn the fourth point by a 6-3, 6-4 score.

Head coach Stella Sampras Webster acknowledged the difficulty both teams had in waiting over four hours past their original start time to take the courts.

"It was tough," said Sampras Webster. "It was tough on both teams to wait and play this late, not knowing when to eat, to stretch, how to get ready. I think our team did a good job, but they didn't come out as strong as I would have liked in doubles, but getting that doubles point kind of relieved some of the stress, the pressure. We played really well, and when you're in this, you don't really know what time it is--you're playing, you're competing and it's intense. I just look at the clock, and I'm like wow, it's 12:30. They did a great job of keeping their energy up and come out and compete hard."

Sampras Webster said her team is looking forward to that rematch with North Carolina.

"We're excited. They're a great team and I know we're looking forward to playing them," Sampras Webster said. "We're definitely where we want to be. The team did a great job of staying focused and doing what they needed to do. They really want this, they really want to do well here, and they did what we needed them to do."
No. 7 UCLA 4,  No. 10 Michigan 0
7 p.m. CT – North Courts
1. #3 Robin Anderson (UCLA) def. #30 Emina Bektas (MICH)  6-3, 6-4
2. #20 Kyle McPhillips (UCLA) def. #58 Ronit Yurovsky (MICH)  6-1, 6-2
3. Pamela Montez (UCLA) vs. Brooke Bolender (MICH)  7-6(3)*
4. #99 Sarah Lee (MICH) vs. Chanelle Van Nguyen (UCLA)  6-3, 3-2*
5. #93 Catherine Harrison (UCLA) vs. Amy Zhu (MICH)  7-6(3), 2-1*
6. Courtney Dolehide (UCLA) def. Kristen Dodge (MICH)  6-1, 6-0

1. #6 Bektas/Bolender (MICH) def. #25 Anderson/Morton (UCLA)  8-6
2. #38 Dolehide/Montez (UCLA) def. #90 Lee/Nguyen (MICH)  9-7
3. Harrison/McPhillips (UCLA) def. Yurovsky/Dodge (MICH)  8-2

Order of Finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (6,2,1)
* = unfinished

NOTE: Match was completed on Saturday, but is being backdated to keep all the women's matches on the same day.


boca player said...

tommy paul won another itf singles today in delray beach.

when is the usta going to give him some legitimate help? Put him in their program.

the bad thing is the usta does not want admit kids into their full time program who think they could be going to college. Will not look good from development standpoint. They have to hurry and produce a player so that is why many are injured.

tommy is a great player and deserves alot of help because the usta have full time players his age who tommy is better than and ranked higher than.

Gerry said...

For late matches, consider this: 2AM in Champaign is 3AM for Michigan, but only midnight for UCLA players. I wonder if early morning matched favor east coast teams, but really late ones probably benefit west coast. Anyway, UCLA deserved every bit to win.
I was happy to see Duke put up a fight agains all odds through the ending of the season and in the tournament. Tough group of girls, all of them, hats off.

Tennis Fan said...

Regarding the close call at the end of the NU vs. Miami match, most of the NU fans weren’t blaming the Miami player as the coach suggests with her “disappointing” comment, but were upset by the referee being seemingly unaware of what happened……..and that she simply did nothing.

To set the stage, remember on the 40-love double fault? On the Miami player’s first serve, she went up the T and the ball was wide by 3 inches or so……very clear as it wasn’t hit very hard to begin with. When called wide, her arms flailed in protest to the referee asking for an over rule but got none. It wasn’t close to the line. The point at 40-15 was dumped in the net weakly so now it’s a 3rd match point at 40-30 and she’s got Miami fans literally screaming at her to win. It's a tense moment full of pressure.....she was tight and when given a very close ball on the next point (it was on the line or just inside – yes I was standing on the line) she called it out. Nida’s ball wasn’t a “screamer”, so it was very easy to see it. Anyway, it’s not unusual to see that call in that situation and I'm certainly not judging the player……..I saw that happen 100’s of times in the juniors. But here with a referee, you just hope for better for the good of the game.

Even the Miami team and fans had a pregnant pause before celebrating because it was not obvious to anyone the ball was out…….and like the NU fans, were probably waiting to hear the referee’s over rule. It never came.