JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. -- Carson-Newman women's tennis (3-4) forced No. 13 North Georgia (6-1) into tiebreakers in five matches but were unable to come out on the winning side of those falling 6-1 in their first match at Mossy Creek.
"Talk about a hard-fought match," Coach Jim Frederick said. "And one where the final score looks a lot worse than what actually happened on the court."
After what seemed like ages of rain and going over ten days without playing a match, the Eagles were ready to take on the Nighthawks.
Beginning the day with doubles competition, juniors Alisa Liashova (Ukraine) and Klara Vuckovic (Germany) worked their way into a tiebreaker at the No. 3 position but narrowly fell 7-6 (9-7). The other two duos were defeated with similar scores giving the Nighthawks the doubles point. At No. 1 Ana Carla Resende (Minas Gerais, Brazil) and Ali Harris (Crossville, Tenn.) were defeated by Holly Bennett and Vaishali Jorge 6-4. Hannah Price (Knoxville, Tenn.) and Abby Reis (Des Moines, IA) fell to Emma Etelalahit and Adrienne Bofinger at No. 2 doubles 6-3.
The two singles matches that were the most intense to watch were numbers two and four. Harris' match lasted the longest at the No. 2 position where she battled for roughly two and a half hours against Jorge. The two went into a tiebreaker for the first set where Harris fell short 7-6 (7-4). She pulled herself together and came back in the second set to win 6-4. With spectators and teammates gathered up to see who would be victorious the two took the third set into yet another tiebreaker. Harris again came up just shy falling 7-6 (7-5). Going up against Jorge was no small feat for Harris. The Nighthawk made a name for herself in the fall portion of the season winning the ITA Southeast Regional tournament advancing to the ITA Nationals where she placed third. Additionally, she was named preseason All-Peach Belt this past January.
Liashova's match lasted nearly as long as Harris' but didn't go into three sets. She fought her way into a tiebreaker for the first set against Zuddy but couldn't finish it and fell 7-6 (7-4). The second set didn't go into a tiebreaker but the two were at it for quite some time. Eventually, Zuddy prevailed yet again, this time 6-4 in the second set to clinch the win.
At No. 1 singles, Resende took her match into a tiebreaker after splitting sets with Bofinger. Bofinger won the first 6-4 but Resende came back and won the second 6-2. The two played a ten point tiebreaker for the match and Resende was able to come out on top 10-6 extending her winning streak to three. Price played at the No. 3 position for the Eagles and split sets with the same score as Resende. She dropped the first to Bennett 6-4 but won the second 6-2 pushing their match into a ten point tiebreaker as well. Price ultimately fell 11-9 in the tiebreaker.
The last two matches for the Eagles went by fairly quickly as Reis was defeated by Claudelle Labonte 6-3, 6-1 at No. 5 and Vuckovic fell to Lexa Loden 6-0, 6-2.
The Eagles will be back in action on March 9 to kick off conference play against Newberry at home at 1 p.m. For more information and updates check back on cneagles.com.
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