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Box Score May 9, 2015

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VIDEO: NCAA 1st Round Press Conference

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – No. 9 seed Virginia opened the 2015 NCAA Championship with a 4-0 win over in-state rival VCU on Saturday (May 9) at Snyder Tennis Center.

Virginia improved to 22-5 with its seventh consecutive win, while VCU ends the season with a 16-9 record. With the win, the Cavaliers advance to the NCAA second round on Sunday (May 10) against South Carolina.

The Cavaliers captured the doubles point and Cassie Mercer (Huntington, W.Va.), Danielle Collins (St. Petersburg, Fla.) and Julia Elbaba (Oyster Bay, N.Y.) each earned singles wins against VCU.

“We handled a team that played really well and really hard against us,” Virginia head coach Mark Guilbeau said. “I don’t think our girls could have been much more efficient and much more effective. Overall, it was a positive experience.”

UVa remained red-hot in doubles, recording its fourth consecutive doubles point with wins at Nos. 3 and 2. Collins and Maci Epstein (Winter Park, Fla.) blanked Olga Barscheuskaya and Alzbeta Veverkova 8-0 on court three. The Cavaliers clinched the point as Stephanie Nauta (Galveston, Texas) and Mercer defeated Darya Berezhnaya and Ana Batiri 8-3 on court two. No. 28 Elbaba and Skylar Morton (Bethesda, Md.) trailed No. 87 Cindy Chala and Salome Kvitashvili 5-3 on court one when the point was clinched.

In singles, Mercer topped Veverkova 6-0, 6-2 on court six and No. 15 Collins beat Kvitashvili 6-1, 6-3 on court two. No. 6 Elbaba clinched the win with a 6-1, 6-2 win over No. 64 Chala on court one. Morton held a 7-6, 5-0 lead over Berezhnaya on court four and Nauta held a one-set lead on Barscheuskaya on court three when Elbaba clinched the win.

“I think a lot of things that we did today we’ve been doing consistently, and if we continue to do those things tomorrow we’ll be in good shape,” Guilbeau added.

First serve for tomorrow’s Virginia-South Carolina regional final is set for 12 p.m. The winner advances to the NCAA round of 16 on Friday, May 15 in Waco, Texas. The Cavaliers defeated the Gamecocks 5-2 earlier this season.

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