March 2, 2018
ATLANTA – The Cavaliers came up just short on Friday afternoon, falling for the first time in ACC play this season as No. 24 Virginia (7-3, 2-1 ACC) dropped a 4-3 decision at No. 3 Georgia Tech (8-1, 2-0 ACC).
The Cavaliers won the doubles point to take the early lead, and picked up wins in singles from sophomore Erica Susi (Vero Beach, Fla.) and junior Meghan Kelley (Falmouth, Maine), but the Yellow Jackets were able to grab four singles wins to take the match.
“I’m so proud of this team,” said Virginia head coach Sara O’Leary. “They left everything out on the court and fought so well. It’s all about getting better each day and this was a great test for us against a top five team in the country. We can learn a lot from this match and we are looking forward to getting back out there on Sunday.”
Virginia won the doubles point behind solid play on courts one and two. The duo of Chloe Gullickson (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.) and Cassie Mercer (Huntington, W.Va.) won 6-3 on court two, before Georgia Tech would even things up in doubles with a win on court three.
The Cavaliers clinched the doubles point on court one as the No. 14 pairing of Rosie Johanson (Abbotsford, British Columbia) and Kelley defeated the No. 4 team of Paige Hourigan and Kenya Jones, 7-6.
With the overall match at 1-0 in favor of Virginia moving to singles, the Yellow Jackets were able to pick up wins on courts five, two and four to take a 3-1 lead on the Cavaliers.
Virginia would fight back, however, getting the singles wins from Susi and Kelley to tie the match. Susi defeated Victoria Flores 6-4, 6-4 on court six before Kelley picked up a win over No. 83 Ida Jarlskog on court three by a score of 6-1, 7-6.
Georgia Tech clinched the match on court one, winning a three-set match between nationally-ranked opponents. In that match, No. 67 Johanson took the first set in a tiebreaker before Georgia Tech’s Hourigan, who is ranked No. 25 nationally in singles, would battle back to win the next two sets. Hourigan won 6-7, 6-1, 6-3 over Johanson to seal the victory.
Virginia will return to action on Sunday (March 4), hosting No. 2 Duke in a noon match at the Snyder Tennis Center. Admission to all home Virginia tennis matches is free.
No. 3 Georgia Tech 4, No. 24 Virginia 3
1. No. 25 Paige Hourigan (GT) def. No. 67 Rosie Johanson, 6-7 (3), 6-1, 6-3
2. Johnnise Renaud (GT) def. Cassie Mercer, 6-4, 6-2
3. Meghan Kelley def No. 83 Ida Jarlskog (GT), 6-4, 7-6 (6)
4. Kenya Jones (GT) def. Teodora Radosavljevic, 6-1, 7-6 (3)
5. Nami Otsuka (GT) def. Chloe Gullickson, 6-4, 6-1
6. Erica Susi def. Victoria Flores (GT), 6-4, 6-4
Order of Finish: 5, 2, 4, 6, 3, 1
1. No. 14 Johanson/Kelley def. No. 4 Hourigan/Jones, 7-6 (7)
2. Gullickson/Mercer def. Jarlskog/Renaud, 6-3
3. Flores/Otsuka def. Bleser/Susi, 6-3
Order of Finish: 2, 3, 1