TCU falls to Baylor men, 5-2 (TCU recap/box)

WACO — No. 37 TCU dropped a 5-2 road decision at No. 15 Baylor in its regular-season finale Sunday at the Bears’ Hurd Tennis Center.

The Horned Frogs finished their regular-season schedule with a 17-8 overall record, including 2-3 in Big 12 Conference play. The squad finished in sole possession of fourth place in the final conference standings as it heads into next week’s Big 12 Championship in Norman, Okla. Baylor, the league regular-season champion, improved to 19-4 overall and 5-0 in the Big 12.

The Frogs became the only conference team to take more than one point against the undefeated Bears this season.

“I thought our guys fought their hearts out tonight,” head coach David Roditi said. “Baylor has a good team, and this isn’t an easy place to visit. For our younger guys, it was a learning experience for them to play in front of a hostile environment. This experience here will help teach them to put emotions aside and just go out and play.

“We were in nearly every match tonight. Nick (Chappell) and Will (Stein) beat a very good team at No. 1 doubles, and Orlando (Superlano) had an outstanding win in singles in straight sets. I think we’ve made good progress this season and I’m looking forward to taking our team to the Big 12 Championship next week.”

Baylor opened the match by earning the first point of the night with wins in two of the three doubles matches. TCU’s one doubles victory was a big one, as Nick Chappell and Will Stein, ranked No. 63 nationally entering the weekend, posted an 8-7 decision over the 61st-rated BU duo of Diego Galeano and Mate Zsiga. The Frogs tandem improved to 16-5 overall this season, including 4-1 in the Big 12, with its third straight win, while it also won its third match against a ranked opponent.

In singles action, Superlano earned his first victory of the year over a rated foe, topping No. 66 Zsiga in straight sets at the No. 3 position (6-3, 6-3). The win marked Superlano’s team-best 23rd of the season, including his seventh in the last 10 matches.

Facundo Lugones accounted for TCU’s other point with a three-sets victory over Diego Galeano at No. 4 singles (5-7, 6-2, 6-2). Lugones recorded his 21st overall singles victory of the season while improving his individual Big 12 mark to 4-1.

TCU opens postseason play Friday when it travels to Norman, Okla., for its inaugural appearance at the Big 12 Championship. The Frogs have earned the No. 4 seed and will face fifth-seeded Texas Tech in the tournament’s first round at 9 a.m. at Oklahoma’s Headington Family Tennis Center.

1. #35 Patrick Pradella (BU) def #94 Nick Chappell (TCU) 6-4, 6-4
2. #43 Julian Lenz (BU) def. Arnau Dachs (TCU) 6-4, 6-4
3. Orlando Superlano (TCU) def. #66 Mate Zsiga (BU) 6-3, 6-3
4. Diego Galeano (BU) def. Facundo Lugones (TCU) 5-7, 6-2, 6-2
5. #79 Marko Krickovic (BU) def. JT Sundling (TCU) 6-4, 3-6, 1-0 (10-4)
6. Roberto Maytin (BU) def. Rodolfo Bustamante (TCU) 6-3, 6-1

1. #63 Nick Chappell/Will Stein (TCU) def. #61 Mate Zsiga/Diego Galeano (BU) 8-7 (7-2)
2. Patrick Pradella/Roberto Maytin (BU) def. Max Stevens/JT Sundling (TCU) 8-2
3. Marko Krickovic/Julian Lenz (BU) def. Orlando Superlano/Arnau Dachs (TCU) 9-7

Baylor 18-4 (4-0 Big 12); National ranking #15
TCU 17-8 (2-3 Big 12); National ranking #37
Order of finish: Doubles (2,3,1); Singles (6,1,3,2,5,4)

No. 19 Texas closes regular season with 5-2 win over Texas Tech (UT recap/box)

Seniors Daniel Whitehead and Ben Chen added singles wins on Senior Day to help propel the Horns to victory.

No. 19 Texas 5, No. 46 Texas Tech 2
Sunday, April 21, 2013
Austin, Texas – Penick-Allison Tennis Center

1. Jeff Bryan / Felipe Soares (TTU) def. Ben Chen / Daniel Whitehead (UT) – 9-8(6-3)
2. Chris Camillone / Sudanwa Sitaram (UT) def. Hugo Dojas / Raphael Pfister (TTU) – 8-5
3. Lloyd Glasspool / Søren Hess-Olesen (UT) def. Vitor Manzini / Gabriel Wanderley (TTU) – 9-7
Order of finish: 2, *3, 1

1. #40 Søren Hess-Olesen (UT) def. Vitor Manzini (TTU) – 6-4, 2-6, 6-4
2. Lloyd Glasspool (UT) def. Felipe Soares (TTU)- 5-7, 7-6(5), 6-2
3. #93 Daniel Whitehead (UT) def. Raphael Pfister (TTU) – 5-7, 6-2, 6-4
4. Hugo Dojas (TTU) def. Sudanwa Sitaram (UT) – 7-6(5), 7-5
5. Francisco Zambon (TTU) def. David Holiner (UT) – 2-6, 6-3, 7-5
6. Ben Chen (UT) def. Gabriel Wanderley (TTU) – 6-2, 6-3
Order of finish: 6, 2, 3, *2, 5, 1

AUSTIN – No. 19 Texas men’s tennis earned the doubles point and won four singles matches en route to a 5-2 defeat of Texas Tech to close out the regular season on Sunday afternoon at Penick-Allison Tennis Center.

“We had to fight really hard to get this win,” head coach Michael Center said. “I am happy that our four seniors could win their last match at home. The temperature was hot today, so our high level of fitness really helped us prevail late in the match. We still can play better but we are happy that it is a win.”

Texas (15-7, 3-2 Big 12) concludes its home schedule with an 8-2 record and will be the No. 3 seed in next week’s Big 12 Championship in Norman, Okla. The Longhorns now lead the all-time series with the Red Raiders, 63-6-2. Texas Tech falls to 15-10 and 1-4 Big 12 play this season.

Prior to the match, head coach Michael Center presented the team’s four seniors Chris Camillone, Ben Chen, Alex Hilliard, and Daniel Whitehead with commemorative gifts in honor of their hard work and dedication to the team over the last few years.

“We always want the seniors to go out on a good note,” Center said. “Daniel just fought through his match, Chen did a good job, and Chris did a good job at finishing the match at doubles today. They all contributed and I was happy to see those guys walk out of here with a win.”

At No. 2 doubles Camillone and Sudanwa Sitaram defeated Texas Tech’s Hugo Dojas and Raphael Pfister, 8-5. UT’s top two singles players, Lloyd Glasspool and Soren Hess-Olesen, fought back from a 7-4 deficit, winning five straight games on their way to a 9-7 comeback victory to clinch the doubles point and give Texas a 1-0 lead.

At No. 1 doubles, the Longhorns and Red Raiders traded games before Chen and Whitehead tied it up at 8-8 to force a tiebreaker. Texas Tech’s duo of Jeff Bryan and Felipe Soares won the tiebreaker 7-3.

Chen made the most of his Senior Day at No. 6 singles. At 4-4 in the first set, Chen won six straight games en route to a 6-4, 6-3 defeat of Gabriel Wanderley. His win gave the Horns a 2-0 dual match lead. Chen remains undefeated (3-0) in dual-match play at the sixth singles spot.

Hugo Dojas defeated 118th-ranked Sudanwa Sitaram in a tight 7-6 (5), 7-5 contest to get Texas Tech its first point on the board, cutting the Longhorn lead to 2-1.

The final four singles matches all took third sets to propel Texas to a 5-2 win over Texas Tech.

At No. 3 singles, 93rd-ranked Daniel Whitehead earned his Senior Day win, fighting back from a 7-5 first-set loss to win the next two sets 6-2, 6-4 over Raphael Pfister. Whitehead’s victory extended the Texas lead to 3-1.

Lloyd Glasspool, who has won 17 of his last 19 singles matches, overcame a tight 7-5 loss in the first set to win a second-set tiebreaker 7-6 (5), and top Tech’s Felipe Soares 6-2 in the third set, clinching the match victory for the Longhorns. Glasspool improves to 16-4 in dual-match play with the win.

The Red Raiders’ Francisco Zambon defeated David Holiner 2-6, 6-3, 7-5 at No. 5 singles. Soren Hess-Olesen, ranked 40th in the nation, closed out the Texas victory with a 6-4, 2-6, 6-4 win at No. 1 singles. Hess-Olesen has now won five of his last seven singles matches.

The Longhorns return to action Friday, April 26 in Norman, Okla., for Big 12 Championship. Texas will be the No. 3 seed.

Baylor Women Defeat Texas Tech, 4-3, To Clinch Big 12 Title (BU recap)

The 28th-ranked Lady Bears beat 15th-ranked Lady Raiders for 22nd time in last 24 matches.

LUBBOCK – The 28th-ranked Baylor women’s tennis earned its ninth Big 12 regular-season title in the last 11 years with a 4-3 victory over No. 15 Texas Tech on Sunday at the McLeod Tennis Center.

“I’m really proud of my team,” head coach Joey Scrivano said. “This past month, they have been incredibly focused, very determined and a lot easier to coach. If it wasn’t for them getting on board and really buying in, this wouldn’t have been possible. I’m especially proud of the returning players from last year, who are a big reason of why we’re in this position. They helped pull this team together and get them on the right track.”

With the win, Baylor is now 15-13 overall and 8-1 in Big 12 play. The loss drops Texas Tech to 18-5 and 8-1 in the Big 12. Both teams share the 2013 Big 12 Conference title.

Baylor has won eight straight matches and will now be the No. 1 seed at next week’s Big 12 Championship in Norman, Okla. The Lady Bears will play Friday at 9 a.m. vs. the winner of a match between No. 8 seed Kansas and No. 9 seed Iowa State.

The Big 12 title was the 50th for the Baylor athletic department in the 17-year history of the conference. Baylor earned only 30 titles in the 81-year history of the Southwest Conference.

To start off doubles action, BU’s 17th-ranked tandem of Ema Burgic and Victoria Kisialeva upset Texas Tech’s 15th-ranked Samantha Adams and Kenna Kilgo, 8-4, on court 1.

Clinching the doubles point for Baylor, Alex Leatu and Kiah Generette earned an 8-4 win of their own on court 3 against Caroline Starck and Elizabeth Ullathorne. The BU duo has won five matches in a row with this win.

Alex Clay and Jordaan Sanford’s doubles match against Rashmi Teltumbde and Nikki Sanders was unfinished.

In singles, Baylor would strike first to extend its lead to 2-0. Tenth-ranked Burgic flew past 93rd-ranked Adams in the first spot for the Lady Bears, 6-3, 6-1. Burgic has now won 14 matches in a row on court 1.

The Lady Raiders responded back with a victory on court 5, as Sanders got past Leatu, 6-1, 6-2.

Jordaan Sanford earned another point for the Lady Bears on court 3, with a 6-4, 6-3 victory against Teltumbde.

Clinching the match for BU, Kisialeva snapped a five-match losing streak with a 6-3, 6-4 victory against Kilgo on court 2.

Baylor defaulted in Generette’s match against Ullathorne and Clay’s match versus Starck, which gave Tech two additional points for the 4-3 final score.

Baylor now leads the all-time series against Texas Tech 23-11.

“I looked at this season as an incredible challenge,” Scrivano said. “We had a very young team and a lot of injuries. Four of our starters didn’t play this fall. This is as tough as they come, so for this team to become a Big 12 Championship team is just really amazing. My assistant coaches and the players deserve all the credit. I’m really happy for all these kids who haven’t won a championship to say they’re Big 12 champions. That’s what it’s about for me.”

Up next, the Lady Bears will travel to Norman, Okla. for the Big 12 Championship from April 25-28.

Follow @BaylorWTennis on Twitter for updates on the team all season.

Rice downs Tulsa 4-1 to win C-USA title (Rice recap/box)

Gater Ends Cane’s Reign

Rice senior tennis player Katie Gater fought through nerves and fatigue, both of which were in abundant supply, to end a streak of nine consecutive service game breaks and clinch the 2013 Conference USA Women’s Tennis championship for the Owls on the John E. Hoff Courts at the University of Houston on Sunday afternoon.

The 20th ranked Owls (20-4) claimed the title with a 4-1 victory over 24th ranked Tulsa, breaking a nine-match losing streak against the Golden Hurricane and well as Tulsa’s three-year reign as C-USA champs, giving the Owls their first conference crown since 2006 as well as an automatic return to the NCAA Championship.

“I am so proud of the team and everything they have done this season,” Rice head coach Elizabeth Schmidt said. “Today was the same thing they have been doing all season. They fought from the first point to the last point. They really dug deep. They are a joy to coach and I am so proud of the effort.”

Both teams took to the Hoff Courts just over 16 hours after each had emerged from grueling semifinal matches to earn the right to meet for the second consecutive year to decide the conference champion.

The doubles point, which featured a matchup of the 20th and 21st ranked teams in the country in a battle on Court One, would prove to be an early indication of how the day would proceed. In their 5-2 loss to the Golden Hurricane in early February, TU had clinched the point with wins at 1 and 3 while holding a lead 2 when the match was suspended.

Tulsa’s Samantha Vickers and Isaura Enrique held form, downing Rice’s 20th ranked duo of Natalie Beazant and Dominique Harmath 8-3. However the Owls were making a statement on Courts Two and Three as Gater and Liat Zimmermann responded with an 8-3 win of their own and Solomiya Zinko and Daniela Trigo raced out to a 6-2 lead.

However, Schmidt was not lulled into a sense of false security by the quick start.

“We knew coming in that we really needed that doubles point. We knew they weren’t going away. I was really proud of Dani and Solo for stepping up after Tulsa got it back to 6-6. We told them that it was tight again and that they (Tulsa) was going to get tight again as well. It’s not hard to swing free when you are down 6-2. Dani did a great job of really staying focused and staying positive. That’s something we’ve done all year,” she added.

Trigo and Zinko returned to the court and promptly broke serve to move back in front 7-6. Zinko then held her serve to give the Owls a 1-0 lead.

When singles play began, the top of the lineup featured another marquee matchup between Beazant, the 2012 C-USA Player of the Year and Vickers, who entered the weekend as the 14th ranked singles player in the country. However Schmidt was more focused on seeing the Owls reverse a trend from the previous two days that saw sluggish starts on the six courts. Less than 24 hours earlier, Rice opened singles against SMU by losing five of six first sets, setting the stage for a nearly five-hour battle.

Thankfully, the Owls obliged by racing to first set wins on four of six courts, but Schmidt knew there were difficult points ahead in the near future.

“No better time to get off to a quick start than in the finals of the conference tournament,” Schmidt said. “It gets the momentum rolling and that is great, but closing match, no matter if you are up 3-0 or tied 3-3 is never easy.”

While Beazant and Vickers were slugging it out on Court One, Kimberly Anicete raced out to a 6-1 first set win, and Dominique Harmath followed shortly after with a 6-2 first set win of her own. Gater added a 6-3 win and Beazant, who fell 6-0 6-2 to Vickers in February, captured her first set, 6-4.

Anicete and Harmath did not offer their opponents an opening for a comeback, extending the Rice lead to 3-0 with straight set wins. At the same time, ZInko fought back from a first set loss on Court Six to take the second set, foiling an attempt by Tulsa to make an answer on the scoreboard and possibly deflate some of the Owls momentum.

While Beazant was dropping a second set to Vickers, and Tulsa was eventually posting a point with as win on Court Three, the focus of the match centered on Gater on Court Four.

With the crowd growing along the fence in anticipation of witnessing the clinching moment, Gater and Tulsa’s Saana Saarteinen showed signs of the growing importance of their second set.

Each of the first nine games resulted in a service break, but Gater was able to calm her nerves and recover enough of service game to close out Saarteinen 6-4 and set off the celebration the surrounding crowd and come to see.

“I was really proud of Kate Gater that she could clinch that match in her senior year,” Schmidt said.

Schmidt and the Owls will enjoy the added sense of comfort in knowing it’s not a matter of if the Owls will be in the NCAA team championship field this year, but more a matter of if they might earn the right to host a first round regional or where they will be traveling. In either case, those are easy issues to have play out while her team regroups from the events of the last three days.

“We didn’t know until the day of the selections if we were in or not last year, “Schmidt said. “I’m really proud of the steps we have made these past few years. They are a testament to the players who were here today. They kept believing.”

2013 Conference USA Championship Match
April 21, 2013
John E. Hoff Courts
University of Houston

#20 Rice 4, #24 Tulsa 1

Singles competition
1. #43 Natalie Beazant (RICE) vs. #14 Samantha Vickers (TLS) 6-4, 4-6, 3-3, unfinished
2. #70 Dominique Harmath (RICE) def. Isaura Enrique (TLS) 6-2, 6-4
3. Michelle Farley (TLS) def. Liat Zimmermann (RICE) 7-5, 6-2
4. Katie Gater (RICE) def. Saana Saarteinen (TLS) 6-3, 6-4
5. Kimberly Anicete (RICE) def. Maria Sant’Anna (TLS) 6-1, 6-3
6. Solomiya Zinko (RICE) vs. Renata Kuricova (TLS) 3-6, 6-4, 1-3, unfinished

Doubles competition
1. #21 Samantha Vickers/Isaura Enrique (TLS) def. #20 Natalie Beazant/Dominique Harmath (RICE) 8-3
2. Katie Gater/Liat Zimmermann (RICE) def. Michelle Farley/Saana Saarteinen (TLS) 8-3
3. Daniela Trigo/Solomiya Zinko (RICE) def. Maria Sant’Anna/Renata Kuricova (TLS) 8-6

Match Notes:
Tulsa 19-6; National ranking #24
Rice 20-4; National ranking #20
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (5,2,3,4)

No. 26 Texas tops No. 25 TCU, 4-3 (UT/TCU release/box)

Senior Aeriel Ellis completes league play with a perfect 9-0 mark at Nos. 1 and 2 singles.

FORT WORTH – No. 26 (Texas (14-10, 7-2 Big 12) picked up the doubles point and added three singles wins in a 4-3 win at No. 25 TCU (17-5, 6-3 Big 12) Sunday afternoon at TCU’s Friedman Tennis Center.

Texas opened the match with victories at the third andsecond doubles positions to clinch the doubles point. Annat Rabinovich and Lina Padegimaite led off with an 8-4 win over TCU’s Millie Nichols and Simona Parajova at third doubles. UT clinched the point at second doubles, where Elizabeth Begley and Ellis posted a 9-7 win over Monika Sirilova and Kelsey Sundaram. TCU wrapped the doubles session by winning the remaining match in a tiebreaker at first doubles.

Ellis pushed the Texas lead to 2-0 behind a 6-2, 6-1 win over TCU’s 100th-ranked Olivia Smith at second singles. The Hayward, Calif., native completes a 9-0 run through league play with five of those wins at first singles.

TCU sliced the Texas lead to 2-1 behind a win at thirdsingles, but the Longhorns clinched the team victory behind wins at the fourth and first singles slot. Noel Scott rallied for a 4-6, 6-0, 6-3 win over Sirilova at fourth singles, and Addison clinched the win with a 6-0, 2-6, 6-4 win over TCU’s 45th-ranked Stefanie Tan at first singles. TCU won the remaining matches at the fifth and sixth singles slots.

Texas has earned a first-round bye at this week’s Big 12 Championship in Norman, Okla. The Longhorns will begin play Friday in the quarterfinals against an opponent to be announced.

TCU release
The No. 25 TCU women’s tennis team dropped a hard fought match to the No. 26 Texas Longhorns, 4-3 Sunday at the Bayard H. Friedman Tennis Center.

The loss took the Horned Frogs to 17-5 overall and 6-3 in Big 12 play. Texas improved to 14-10 overall and 7-2 in conference play.

“It was a tough one today,” TCU head coach Dave Borelli said. “Each match we played was real close. We need to get everyone healthy and hopefully we can all be playing well at the same time come next week at the Big 12 tournament.”

After dropping the doubles point, TCU finally got on the board at No. 3 singles via Simona Parajova’s 6-3, 7-5 win over UT’s Elizabeth Begley. She closed out the regular season winning six of her last eight singles matches.

With the match result already going in favor of Texas, the No. 6 singles competition went to a super tiebreaker after TCU’s Kelsey Sundaram and Lara Groenvynck of UT split the first two sets. A back-and-forth affair eventually broke the way of Sundaram as she took the super tiebreak 11-9 to officially win 5-7, 6-1, 1-0 (9). Sundaram won six consecutive singles matches, five in Big 12 play, to finish out the regular season.

The Horned Frogs picked up their third team point at No. 5 singles from Millie Nichols, who won via a Lina Padegimaite retirement. Nichols had fought her way back into the match after dropping the first set 2-6. She took the second set 6-1 and fought back to tie the third 2-2.

Though TCU did not clinch the doubles point, they still picked up a big upset at No. 1 singles. The duo of Olivia Smith and Stefanie Tan came back to stun Breaunna Addison and Noel Scott, ranked as the No. 13 doubles pairing by the ITA, 9-8 (7). It was only the fourth time all season Smith and Tan have teamed up for doubles.

The Longhorns scored big wins in the singles competition to put the result out of TCU’s reach. A notable event was Aeriel Ellis of Texas completed an undefeated Big 12 campaign in singles with a 6-2, 6-1 win over Smith. At No. 4 singles, Noel Scott of Texas ended Monkia Sirilova’s perfect Big 12 campaign with a 4-6, 6-0, 6-3 victory.

The Horned Frogs will next be in action Friday at the Big 12 Championship hosted by the University of Oklahoma. TCU’s opponent and time of the match will be announced in the coming days.

No. 26 Texas 4, No. 25 TCU 3
Doubles – Order of Finish: 3, 2, 1
1 Olivia Smith/Stefanie Tan (TCU) def. #13 Breaunna Addison/Noel Scott (UT) – 9-8 (7)
2 Elizabeth Begley/Aeriel Ellis (UT) def. Monika Sirilova/Kelsey Sundaram (TCU) – 9-7
3 Annat Rabinovich/Lina Padegimaite (UT) def. Millie Nichols/Simona Parajova (TCU) – 8-4

Singles – Order of Finish: 2, 3, 4, 1, 5, 6
1 #36 Breaunna Addison (UT) def. #45 Stefanie Tan (TCU) – 6-0, 2-6, 6-4
2 #38 Aeriel Ellis (UT) def. #100 Olivia Smith (TCU) – 6-2, 6-1
3 Simona Parajova (TCU) def. Elizabeth Begley (UT) – 6-3, 7-5
4 Noel Scott (UT) def. Monika Sirilova (TCU) – 4-6, 6-0, 6-3
5 Millie Nichols (TCU) def. Lina Padegimaite (UT) – 2-6, 6-1, 2-2, ret.
6 Kelsey Sundaram (TCU) def. Lana Groenvynck (UT) – 5-7, 6-1, 1-0 (11-9)

No. 31 St. Edward’s women lose heartbreaker to No. 28 St. Mary’s in Heartland Conference Championship (SEU notes/box)

The Basics

-Score: #28 St. Mary’s 5, #31 St. Edward’s 2
-Records: St. Edward’s 11-8: St. Mary’s 18-4
-Location: Dallas, Texas (Kiest Tennis Center)

How It Happened
-St. Edward’s fell behind after doubles action, 2-1. Francesca Chahor and Katherine Sullivan picked up the only victory at the number three position, 8-3.
-In singles action, the Rattlers took home straight-set victories at numbers one through three positions to clinch the match 5-2.
-Rafaela Haegele quickly disposed of her opponent at the number four position for the Hilltoppers and they also led in the other two matches when the match was about to clinched.

Beyond the Box Score
-Chahor and Sullivan have been outstanding down the stretch in doubles. The duo has an 8-3 record in its last 11 matches.

St. Mary’s 5, St. Edward’s 2
Doubles competition
1. Mariana Rong/Ariana Saldana (STMU) def. Sasha Khadzhyan/Florence Boinon (SEUWT) 8-6
2. Cristina Lopez/Felicity Delgado (STMU) def. Paige Rachel/Rafaela Haegele (SEUWT) 8-2
3. Francesca Chahor/Katherine Sullivan (SEUWT) def. Valentine Lambrechts/Joanie Bryant (STMU) 8-3

Singles competition
1. Mariana Rong (STMU) def. Sasha Khadzhyan (SEUWT) 6-1, 6-1
2. Cristina Lopez (STMU) def. Paige Rachel (SEUWT) 6-2, 6-0
3. Felicity Delgado (STMU) def. Florence Boinon (SEUWT) 7-5, 6-2
4. Rafaela Haegele (SEUWT) def. Valentine Lambrechts (STMU) 6-1, 6-2
5. Ariana Saldana (STMU) vs. Francesca Chahor (SEUWT) 1-6, 3-5, unfinished
6. Joanie Bryant (STMU) vs. Katherine Sullivan (SEUWT) 1-6, 2-2, unfinished

Up Next
St. Edward’s will now have to wait and see if they receive an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament. Check the Hilltopper Athletic Website for NCAA Tournament updates.

No. 25 St. Edward’s wins Heartland crown with 5-1 victory over rival St. Mary’s (SEU notes/box)

The Basics

-Score: #25 St. Edward’s 5, #44 St. Mary’s 1
-Records: St. Edward’s 8-13: St. Mary’s 12-9
-Location: Dallas, Texas (Kiest Tennis Center)

How It Happened
-St. Edward’s took a 2-1 lead after doubles action. The Hilltoppers lost at number one, but overpowered its opponents at numbers two and three for the lead. James Rogers and Maximo Agoglia won at number two, 8-1, and Alexandre Bueno and Ivan Vaz defeated their opponents at number three, 8-5.
-In singles play, St. Edward’s got quick wins from Felix Bake at number four singles, 6-2, 6-4, while Adrian Garza defeated his opponent at number six, 6-1, 6-3. Alexandre Bueno clinched the title for the Hilltoppers.

Beyond the Box Score
-The Hilltoppers have won the crown seven times in the last eight years.
-St. Edward’s now owns a 17-1 all-time record against the Rattlers in NCAA DII play.

St. Edward’s 5, St. Mary’s 1
Doubles competition
1. Andrej Klipa/Zach Nicholson (STMUMT13) def. Pedro Bronstrup/Felix Bake (SEUMT) 8-5
2. James Rogers/Maximno Agoglia (SEUMT) def. Jared Fellows/Matt Banner (STMUMT13) 8-1
3. Alexandre Bueno/Ivan Vaz (SEUMT) def. Brien Galon/Carlos Olea (STMUMT13) 8-5

Singles competition
1. Andrej Klipa (STMUMT13) vs. James Rogers (SEUMT) 4-6, 6-4, 1-2, unfinished
2. Zach Nicholson (STMUMT13) vs. Pedro Bronstrup (SEUMT) 4-6, 6-3, 2-1, unfinished
3. Jared Fellows (STMUMT13) vs. Maximno Agoglia (SEUMT) 5-7, 2-2, unfinished
4. Felix Bake (SEUMT) def. Matt Banner (STMUMT13) 6-2, 6-4
5. Alexandre Bueno (SEUMT) def. Carlos Olea (STMUMT13) 7-5, 6-4
6. Adrian Garza (SEUMT) def. Brien Galon (STMUMT13) 6-1, 6-3

Courtside with Coach Sterns
Russell Sterns on the team’s play today
“We won in a dominant fashion today against a good program. We had different guys step up today and that shows the depth of this team. My freshmen (Bake and Agoglia) are really starting to solidify themselves in the middle of the lineup. We have really good team chemistry with this team. I feel like we have battled through a lot of adversity with injuries and are almost healthy.”

On the play of St. Mary’s
“This was very challenging to win this year. St. Mary’s is a strong program that is much improved.

Looking towards the NCAA Tournament
“We played all of the top teams in our region really close. We still have a chance to prove ourselves within the region. We normally play our best tennis win it comes to the postseason and I hope that continues.”

Up Next
St. Edward’s will wait and see what seed they earn. They do know that they will probably be on the road for the regional as they will be either the #3 or #4 seed. The regional match will take place sometime between April 28-30, as the home team has the choice of date. Check the Hilltopper Athletic Website for more information on postseason play.

Fourth-Ranked Texas A&M Falls to No. 2 Florida, 4-1, in SEC Semifinals (TAMU recap/box)

STARKVILLE, Miss. – Second-ranked and No. 3 seed Florida avenged a Southeastern Conference regular-season loss to fourth-ranked and No. 2 seed Texas A&M with a 4-1 victory in the semifinals of the SEC Women’s Tennis Championship today at the A.J. Pitts Tennis Centre on the Mississippi State campus.

“I know our group is bitterly disappointed at the loss,” A&M head coach Howard Joffe said, “and yet I couldn’t be more proud of the individual and collective efforts of the Aggies.”

The Aggies, who handed Florida its only SEC regular season loss and snapped the Gators’ then-45-match overall win streak against SEC opponents with a 4-3 victory on March 3 in College Station, fall to 21-3 and now await the announcement of the NCAA 64-team tournament field on April 30.

Florida, which tied A&M and Georgia for the SEC regular season title with a 12-1 conference record, improves to 22-2 and advances to the championship match for the 24th time in the 26-year history of the tournament.

“Florida played with great determination and was able to come back against us after we won the doubles point,” Joffe said. “I know that with a few days of rest and some time to focus on the studies, we will be fresh to prepare and then perform our best for the NCAA tournament.”

SEC-newcomer Texas A&M entered the second-ever meeting between the two programs riding a six-match win streak. In addition, the Aggies boasted a 15-0 record when winning the doubles point. Although the Aggies got off to a promising start by winning the doubles point against the Gators, both notable streaks would come to an end.

Florida won the first doubles match to be completed with an 8-2 victory at the No. 1 line. The 22nd-ranked duo of Lauren Embree and Sofie Oyen jumped out to a 4-0 lead, and A&M’s 43rd-ranked Cristina Sanchez-Quintanar and Wen Sun, playing the No. 1 line for only the fourth time this season, were unable to overcome the deficit.

At the No. 2 court, A&M’s 16th-ranked Stefania Hristov and Cristina Stancu went up a break in the opening game against Alexandra Cercone and Caroline Hitimana and kept the lead throughout the match. After the first game, both teams held serve until A&M broke a second time to win the match, 8-5.

The point came down to the No. 3 line where A&M twins Ines and Paula Deheza battled game-for-game against Florida’s Danielle Collins and Brianna Morgan. The match stayed on serve until the Aggies broke to go up 4-3. A&M later went up another break at 7-4 with Paula serving for the match. The Gators were on the verge of breaking, but A&M got the score back to deuce. Florida hit long to put A&M at match point, but the Gators stayed alive as A&M hit into the net. Florida netted on the next play to put A&M at match point for the second time. Florida then hit long as the Dehezas won the match, 8-4, to clinch the doubles point for the fourth consecutive match and extend their win streak to five.

Florida, which entered the match 4-2 when dropping the doubles point, quickly gained momentum at the start of singles. With a lineup that featured four nationally ranked singles players, the Gators won the first set on four courts.

Olivia Janowicz evened the score at 1-1, with a 6-2, 6-2 victory over Aggie freshman Anna Mamalat, who moved up to the No. 5 line for the first time after posting a 6-3 dual match record at No. 6.

The Gators then took the lead, 2-1, after 15th-ranked Oyen pulled away from 73rd-ranked Stancu, 6-3, 6-2 at No. 2. Florida widened the margin to 3-1 as top-ranked Embree topped fourth-ranked Sanchez-Quintanar, 6-2, 6-1, at the No. 1 court. It marked Embree’s 18th consecutive singles victory and her 36th straight victory in a dual match.

The Aggies continued to put up a fight on the remaining three courts, which all went to a third set.

Ines Deheza, who enter the match riding a team-best 11-match win streak in singles, had her hands full at the No. 4 line, where 95th-ranked Morgan had dropped the opening frame, 6-1, but won the first four games of the second set en route to a 6-4 win to force a third set. Morgan then took command, winning the final set, 6-0, to clinch the victory for the Gators.

A&M’s 71st-ranked Narzari Urbina and 54th-rancked Cercone were locked 3-3 in the final set when Morgan clinched the fourth point for the Gators and play was stopped. Urbina had won the first set, 6-3, and Cercone had taken the second set, 6-2, to force the third set.

Although the No. 6 line was the first to complete a first set at the start of singles, Hristov continued to battle after dropping the opener, 6-1, to 120th-ranked Danielle Collins. Hristov forced a tiebreaker in the second set and scored four consecutive points to close out a 7-4 victory and command a third set. Collins had jumped out to a 5-1 lead in the final set, but Hristov stayed alive by winning four consecutive games to tie the score at 5-5. After exchanging games, the two were about to begin a tiebreaker when Florida won its fourth point and play was stopped.

Florida aims to when its fourth consecutive tournament title when the Gators face No. 1 seed and third-ranked Georgia in the championship match Sunday at 1 p.m.

Aggie fans can keep up to date on the A&M women’s tennis team on Twitter by following @AggieWTEN or on Facebook at:!/pages/Aggie-Womens-Tennis/143874782434654

No. 2 Florida 4, No. 4 Texas A&M 1
SEC Women’s Tennis Championship – Semifinal
A.J. Pitts Tennis Centre, Starkville, Miss.
April 20, 2013

1. #1 Lauren Embree (UF) def. #4 Cristina Sanchez-Quintanar (TAMU), 6-2, 6-1
2. #15 Sofie Oyen (UF) def. #73 Cristina Stancu (TAMU), 6-3, 6-2
3. #71 Nazari Urbina (TAMU) vs. #54 Alexandra Cercone (UF), 6-3, 2-6, 3-3 unfinished
4. #95 Brianna Morgan (UF) def. Ines Deheza (TAMU), 1-6, 6-4, 6-0
5. Olivia Janowicz (UF) def. Anna Mamalat (TAMU), 6-2, 6-2
6. Stefania Hristov (TAMU) vs. #120 Danielle Collins (UF), 1-6, 7-6 (4), 6-6 unfinished

Doubles (Texas A&M wins the point)
1. #22 Embree/Oyen (UF) def. #43 Sanchez-Quintanar/Sun (TAMU), 8-2
2. #16 Hristov/Stancu (TAMU) def. Cercone/Caroline Hitimana (UF), 8-5
3. I. Deheza/Paula Deheza (TAMU) def. Collins/Morgan (UF), 8-4

Order of finish
Doubles: 1, 2, 3
Singles: 5, 2, 1, 4

Team records
Texas A&M: 21-3
Florida: 21-2

Tournament Schedule/Results (national ranking in parentheses)
Wednesday, April 17 – First Round
No. 12 Mississippi State def. No. 13 Missouri (56), 4-2
No. 14 LSU (64) def. No. 11 Kentucky (42), 4-2

Thursday, April 18 – Second Round
No. 9 Ole Miss def. No. 8 South Carolina, 4-3
No. 5 Tennessee def. No. 12 Mississippi State, 4-0
No. 7 Auburn def. No. 10 Arkansas, 4-3
No. 6 Vanderbilt def. No. 14 LSU, 4-0

Friday, April 19 – Quarterfinals
No. 1 Georgia (3) def. No. 9 Ole Miss (39), 4-0
No. 4 Alabama (8) def. No. 5 Tennessee (29), 4-3
No. 2 Texas A&M (4) def. No. 7 Auburn (19), 4-0
No. 3 Florida (2) def. No. 6 Vanderbilt (18), 4-3

Saturday, April 20 – Semifinals
No. 1 Georgia (3) def. No. 4 Alabama (8), 4-2
No. 3 Florida (2) def. No. 2 Texas A&M (4), 4-1

Sunday, April 21 – Finals
1:00 p.m. No. 1 Georgia (3) vs. No. 3 Florida (2)

No. 51 SMU Women Fall In C-USA Semifinals Against No. 20 Rice (SMU recap/box)

Yana Erkeeva Scores For The Mustangs In The 4-1 Loss

HOUSTON — The No. 51 SMU women’s tennis team fell 4-1 against No. 20 Rice in the semifinals of the Conference USA Championship on Saturday. Yana Erkeeva earned the lone point for the Mustangs (14-10).

“We put up a fight today, but Rice was too tough,” said head coach Kati Gyulai. “We played with the lead in doubles and won five first sets, but this is not a one set contest. Congratulations to Rice!”

The Mustangs fell behind early as Rice took the doubles point. At No. 3 doubles, Edyta Cieplucha and Elena Fayner won 8-6. Cieplucha now has 72 career doubles victories which is seventh at SMU.

In singles, the Mustangs won the first set in five of six matchups. At No. 6, Yana Erkeeva capitalized on here first set win by sweeping Solomiya Zinko 6-3, 6-4.

Two of the matchups were left unfinished, including the top singles contest. No. 74 Aleksandra Malyarchikova was tied 2-2 in the this set against No. 43 Natalie Beazant of RICE. The first two sets had gone to tiebreakers with Beazant talking the first 7-6 (7-0) and Malyarchikova getting the second 7-6 (9-7).

The NCAA team selections are April 30 and the individual selections on May 1.

SMU vs Rice
Apr 20, 2013 at Houston, Texas

#20 Rice 4, #51 SMU 1

Singles competition
1. #43 Natalie Beazant (RICE) vs. #74 Aleks Malyarchikova (SMU) 7-6 (7-0), 6-7 (7-9), 2-2, unfinished
2. #70 Dominique Harmath (RICE) def. Edyta Cieplucha (SMU) 5-7, 6-2, 6-3
3. Liat Zimmermann (RICE) def. Vaszilisza Bulgakova (SMU) 3-6, 6-3, 6-2
4. Katie Gater (RICE) vs. Elena Fayner (SMU) 6-7 (3-7), 6-2, 2-4, unfinished
5. Kimberly Anicete (RICE) def. Hristina Dishkova (SMU) 3-6, 6-2, 6-2
6. Yana Erkeeva (SMU) def. Solomiya Zinko (RICE) 6-3, 6-4

Doubles competition
1. #20 Natalie Beazant/Dominique Harmath (RICE) def. #66 Vaszilisza Bulgakova/Aleks Malyarchikova (SMU) 8-4
2. Katie Gater/Liat Zimmermann (RICE) def. Hristina Dishkova/Holly Verner (SMU) 9-8 (0-3)
3. Edyta Cieplucha/Elena Fayner (SMU) def. Solomiya Zinko/Daniela Trigo (RICE) 8-6

Match Notes:
SMU 14-10; National ranking #51
Rice 18-4; National ranking #20
Order of finish: Doubles (13,2); Singles (6,3,5,2)

Rice men swept by Memphis in C-USA semis (box)

Rice vs University of Memphis Apr 20, 2013 at Memphis, Tenn. (MUS)
#35 University of Memphis 4, #74 Rice 0
1. Connor Glennon (MEMPHIS) vs. Jonathan Chang (RICE) 6-7, 1-1, unfinished
2. Joe Salisbury (MEMPHIS) vs. Adam Gustafsson (RICE) 5-7, 4-1, unfinished
3. Lukas Vrnak (MEMPHIS) vs. Tommy Bennett (RICE) 6-3, 2-1, unfinished
4. Johnny Grimal (MEMPHIS) def. Philipp Seifert (RICE) 6-3, 6-4
5. David O’Leary (MEMPHIS) def. Gustavo Gonzalez (RICE) 6-2, 6-0
6. David O’Hare (MEMPHIS) def. Leif Berger (RICE) 6-1, 6-2

1. #51 David O’Hare/Joe Salisbury (MEMPHIS) def. Tommy Bennett/Adam Gustafsson (RICE) 8-6
2. Connor Glennon/Cedric de Zutter (MEMPHIS) vs. Jonathan Chang/Leif Berger (RICE) 8-8 (4-2), unfinished
3. Johnny Grimal/Lukas Vrnak (MEMPHIS) def. Philipp Seifert/Peter Frank (RICE) 8-1
Match Notes:
Rice 11-14; National ranking #74
University of Memphis 13-7; National ranking #35
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1); Singles (5,6,4) T-2:57


FIRST ROUND – Thursday, April 18
(9) East Carolina 4, (8) UCF 3

QUARTERFINALS – Friday, April 19
(1) Tulsa 4, (9) East Carolina 1
(4) SMU 4, (5) Old Dominion 0
(2) Memphis 4, (7) UAB 0
(6) Rice 4, (3) Tulane 3

SEMIFINALS – Saturday, April 20
(1) Tulsa 4, (4) SMU 2
(2) Memphis 4, (6) Rice 0

CHAMPIONSHIP – Sunday, April 21
(1) Tulsa at (2) Memphis – 12 p.m.

Central Time