Jan. 28, 2017
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – In a back-and-forth match, it came down a third set in the final match of the day on Saturday (Jan. 28) as Virginia (1-1) fell to Ole Miss (3-0) by a score of 4-3 in the ITA Kick-Off Weekend at the Boar’s Head Sports Club.
With the loss, the Cavaliers will now face Wake Forest (3-2) in the consolation finals at 10 a.m. on Sunday (Jan. 29). The Rebels advanced to face No. 19 LSU in the finals at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday with a berth in the ITA National Team Indoor Championships on the line.
Virginia held a 3-2 lead in the overall match late, after dropping the doubles point to start the day. Freshmen Rosie Johanson (Abbotsford, British Columbia) and Chloe Gullickson (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.), and sophomore Meghan Kelley (Falmouth, Maine) picked up wins in singles to give the Cavaliers the lead.
But with tight matches in the third set on courts one and six, Ole Miss fought back to win the match by grabbing victories on both courts.
The Rebels took the early lead, grabbing the doubles point with wins on courts one and three. The pairing of Gullickson and Mercer lost 6-2 to the Ole Miss pairing of Hartono and Vrbenska on court one, while the Cavaliers’ Bleser and Favero fell 6-3 on court three to the Rebels’ Jandric and Khairudinova.
Ole Miss moved out to the 2-0 lead in the match with a straight-set victory on court five as Tea Jandric defeated Cavalier freshman Camille Favero (Sacramento, Calif.).
Virginia stormed back in front, however, picking up the next three singles matches to take the lead. Johanson posted a 6-2, 6-1 win on court two over Natalie Suk, while Kelley won 7-6 (5), 6-0 over reigning SEC Freshman of the Week, Anna Vrbenska, on court three to even the match. Gullickson then fought for a 6-4, 7-5 win on court four to put Virginia on top.
On court one, junior Cassie Merer (Huntington, W.V.) fought back after dropping the first set and cruised to a set two win to force a decisive third set with No. 31 Arianne Hartono. The match went into a tiebreak in the third set, with the All-American, Hartono, fighting to the 6-0, 1-6, 7-6 (5) victory.
With the match tied in the overall score 3-3, it fell to a three-set matchup between freshmen on court six. After falling behind in the third, freshman Hunter Bleser (New Braunfels, Texas) broke serve and held serve to cut the match to within one of Ole Miss’ freshman Alexa Bortles at 5-4. The Rebel freshman closed things out, however, picking up the 3-6, 6-2, 6-4 win to secure the match for Ole Miss.
Ole Miss 4, Virginia 3
No. 31 Arianne Hartono def. Cassie Mercer, 6-0, 1-6, 7-6 (5)
No. 79 Rosie Johanson def. Natalie Suk, 6-2, 6-1
No. 124 Meghan Kelley def. Anna Vrbenska, 7-6 (5), 6-0
Chloe Gullickson def. Zalina Khairudinova, 6-4, 7-5
Tea Jandric def. Camille Favero, 6-1, 6-0
Alexa Bortles def. Hunter Bleser, 3-6 6-2, 6-4
Order of Finish: 5, 2, 3, 4, 1, 6
Hartono/Vrbenska (OM) def. Gullickson/Mercer (UVA), 6-2
Johanson/Kelley (UVA) vs. Bortles/Suk (OM), 5-3 (unfinished)
Khairudinova/Jandric (OM) def. Bleser/Favero (UVA), 6-3
Order of Finish: 3, 1