Virginia Women's Tennis Edged by Duke in NCAA Round of 16
ATHENS, Ga. – The No. 14 Virginia women’s tennis team had its 2012 season come to an end with a 4-1 loss to No. 3 Duke in the round of 16 of the NCAA Tournament Thursday at the Dan Magill Tennis Center. The Cavaliers conclude the season with a 20-8 record, matching the school record for wins in a season set last year, while the Blue Devils (28-2) advance to the quarterfinals to meet host Georgia.
“This was really two matches in one,” said Virginia head coach Mark Guilbeau. “The doubles was exciting and we came out ready to play. Give Duke a lot of credit to come back in singles. That is a program that we want to beat and this year it just didn’t happen. I am extremely proud of our team. It has been a rough, hard season, with a lot of positives. Hopefully we can take those and build upon them to start next year.”
The Cavaliers started the match strong, winning the doubles point. Virginia took the early edge at No. 3 as Lindsey Hardenbergh (Fairfax Station, Va.) and Maria Fuccillo (Rockville, Md.) jumped out to a 7-2 lead and cruised to an 8-4 victory over Hanna Mar and Monica Gorny. Duke drew even at No. 2 where Beatrice Capra and Rachel Kahan downed Hana Tomljanovic (Boca Raton. Fla.) and Erin Vierra (Norwell, Mass.) 8-4. The opening point came down to the match at No. 1 where Emily Fraser (Rye, N.Y.) and Li Xi (Kunming, China) played Ester Goldfeld and Mary Clayton. Fraser and Xi took a 4-1 lead just to see Goldfeld and Clayton draw even at 4-all. The match remained on serve until the Cavalier duo broke Goldfeld’s serve to take a 7-5 lead and Xi served it out in the next game for an 8-5 Virginia victory.
Early in singles the match was halted for over two-and-half hours as a band of thunderstorms hit Athens. Following the delay, the Blue Devils came out strong winning five of the six first sets. The Blue Devils drew even in the match at the No. 4 position, where Kahan posted a 6-4, 6-0 win over Tomljanovic. Duke took the lead as Capra, the ACC Player of the Year, topped Fraser 6-3, 6-2 at the No. 1 position. Clayton extended the lead, saving a set-point in the first set en route to a 7-5, 6-2 win at No. 5 over Vierra. Monica Turewicz clinched the Duke victory at No. 6, edging Caryssa Peretz (Cherry Hill, N.J.) 6-3, 7-6(3).
“I think when you win the doubles point, you can use that momentum to start singles,” said Guilbeau. “Maybe the rain took a little bit of that momentum away. Both teams handled the delay very well. Both teams came out focused and we just made a couple more errors than they did in singles.”
The Cavaliers tied their best showing in the NCAA Tournament by reaching the round of 16. Last year Virginia reached the round of 16 for the first time in school history.
“I am so proud of my four years at Virginia,” said Fraser. “I was really hoping we could take that next step and reach the quarterfinals and I could be part of it. Although we came up short this time, I know the program is headed in the right direction and that it will take that next step soon.”
Virginia’s two seniors, Fraser and Hardenbergh, will conclude their collegiate careers next week as they compete in the NCAA Singles and Doubles Championships. Play at the individual championships will begin on Wednesday in Athens.
#3 DUKE 4, #14 VIRGINIA 1
1. #31 Fraser/Xi (UVa) def. #21 Clayton/Goldfeld (Duke) 8-6
2. #17 Capra/Kahan (Duke) def. #43 Tomljanovic/Vierra (UVa) 8-4
3. Fuccillo/Hardenbergh (UVa) def. Mar/Gorny (Duke) 8-4
1. #2 Beatrice Capra (Duke) def. #22 Emily Fraser (UVa) 6-3, 6-2
2. #110 Ester Goldfeld (Duke) led #43 Lindsey Hardenbergh (UVa) 6-4, 4-5 DNF
3. #118 Li Xi (UVa) led #59 Hanna Mar (Duke) 7-5, 2-3 DNF
4. #85 Rachel Kahan (Duke) def. #125 Hana Tomljanovic (UVa) 6-4, 6-0
5. #66 Mary Clayton (Duke) def. Erin Vierra (UVa) 7-5, 6-2
6. #97 Monica Turewicz (Duke) def. Caryssa Peretz (UVa) 6-3, 7-6(3)
Order of Finish: