ASHEVILLE, N.C. – The USC Upstate women's tennis team held a 3-0 lead Saturday afternoon on the road, but the Spartans could not hold off a furious UNC Asheville rally, falling 4-3 to the Bulldogs in non-conference action.
The Spartans (2-2) fall short in their attempt for a third consecutive victory, while the Bulldogs (2-1) stay perfect on the year at the Asheville Racquet Club at 2-0.
After splitting doubles matches at the No. 2 and 3 positions, it all came down to the No. 1 tandem of Julie Bell and Taylor, and for the second straight match the duo delivered in the clutch. The 8-6 victory propelled Upstate to the first point of the day and an early 1-0 lead. Constanze Kuerten and Talia Rojas were also winners in doubles action, earning an 8-7 victory with a 7-5 edge in the all-important tiebreaker.
Looking to carry the doubles momentum into singles play, Upstate did just that and quickly added to its lead when Isabel von Stryk delivered a masterful 6-1, 6-2 victory at No. 2 singles, extending the Spartan lead to 2-0. Kuerten followed and made it 3-0 with a 6-1, 6-4 victory over Christin Boissevain at the No. 3 spot, leaving Upstate just one point away from victory.
With four matches still in play, the Spartans were looking to gain an edge in any match to secure the victory, but UNC Asheville was on the comeback and had other plans in mind. The Bulldogs earned victories at No. 1, No. 4 and No. 6 singles to deadlock the score at 3-3, leaving the match in the hands of Julie Bell and Amryn Soldier at No. 5 singles.
Bell secured the opening set with a 6-3 victory, but Soldier bounced back and picked up the second set 6-2 and won the third and deciding set 6-2 to give UNC Asheville the match 4-3.
The Spartans return to the courts next Wednesday, welcoming nearby Wofford College to the USC Upstate Tennis Complex for a crosstown matchup with the Terriers. First serve is slated for 2 p.m.
UNC Asheville 4, USC Upstate 3
Feb 02, 2013 at Asheville, N.C. (Asheville Racquet Club)
|1. HAMEL, Zoe (ASHW) def. Taylor Cohen (UPSTW) 7-6 (7-5), 6-2|
|2. Isabel von Stryk (UPSTW) def. MCNALL, Emily (ASHW) 6-1, 6-2|
|3. Constanze Kuerten (UPSTW) def. BOISSEVAIN, Christin (ASHW) 6-1, 6-4|
|4. RIVERO, Erickia (ASHW) def. Talia Rojas (UPSTW) 4-6, 6-3, 6-4|
|5. SOLDIER, Amryn (ASHW) def. Julie Bell (UPSTW) 3-6, 6-2, 6-2|
|6. LEWIS, Gillian (ASHW) def. Sarah Vande Berg (UPSTW) 6-4, 6-3|
|1. Julie Bell/Taylor Cohen (UPSTW) def. HAMEL, Zoe/RIVERO, Erickia (ASHW) 8-6|
|2. Constanze Kuerten/Talia Rojas (UPSTW) def. BOISSEVAIN, Christin/MCNALL, Emily (ASHW) 8-7 (7-5)|
|3. LEWIS, Gillian/SOLDIER, Amryn (ASHW) def. Isabel von Stryk/Sarah Vande Berg (UPSTW) 8-7 (7-5)|
|UNC Asheville 2-1|
|USC Upstate 2-2|
|Order of finish: Doubles (3,2,1); Singles (2,3,1,4,6,5)|