HICKORY, N.C. -- Carson-Newman took on Lenoir-Rhyne in hopes of conquering the Bears the second time around but fell 4-2 in the South Atlantic Conference tournament quarterfinals Tuesday afternoon.
"We finally won a doubles point," Coach Jim Frederick said. "But we were just unable to fight in singles."
On the doubles side of competition, the Eagles won handily at No. 2 and No. 3 with sophomores Hannah Price (Knoxville, Tenn.) and Abby Reis (Des Moines, IA.) defeating Diana Babinets and Gemma Southwick 6-3 at No. 2. Klara Vuckovic (Germany) and Alisa Liashova (Ukraine) dominated Sanne Janssen and Lucy Whelan 6-1 clinching the doubles point for C-N. Due to the point being decided, the match between the duo of Ana Carla Resende (Minas Gerais, Brazil) and Ali Harris and Marta Escanero Funes and Emily Murchland was cut short.
Moving into singles play ahead 1-0, the Eagles had some momentum and confidence to ride on. At No. 5, Reis went head to head with Ally Garofoli and fell in straight sets 6-1, 6-1 to bring the overall score to 1-1. Vuckovic played in the No. 6 position and finished second for the Eagles but fell to Murchland 6-2, 6-0 giving the Bears the lead by one. Liashova competed at No. 4 going against Funes and was the third Eagle to go down falling 6-3, 6-3.
With the Bears now one singles win away from claiming the entire match, the pressure was on the remaining three left to play. Resende, who has been the most consistent player for the Eagles this season, did her part at No. 1 and defeated Southwick 7-5, 6-1. C-N was just one point behind at 3-2, and all eyes turned to the last two matches in play.
Harris was battling it out against Iulia Ponomareva at No. 2 and Price was taking on Babinets at No. 3. Both lost their first sets with Harris' score being 6-3 and Price's 6-2. However, they both came back in their second sets with flipped scores. Harris won hers 6-3 and Price won her second 6-2. Price was unable to carry the momentum into her third set and fell 6-3 giving the match to Lenoir-Rhyne. Harris was ahead in her third set 5-2 but did not finish due to the match being decided.
The Eagles finished 9-10 overall on the season and 5-5 in conference play. Harris will be the only Eagle graduating in May so the majority of the team will be returning. For more news and updates, check back on cneagles.com.
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