Frogs Fall To Tulane, 4-3, In C-USA Championship Final
April 24, 2005
Fort Worth, Texas - The No. 17 TCU women's tennis team dropped a tough match against No. 16 Tulane, 4-3, today in the final of the C-USA Championship held at the Bayard H. Friedman Tennis Center. The match came down to three singles, but the Frogs came up just short to lose for the sixth consecutive time in the series with the Green Wave and third straight in the final of the championship.
"This was a tight match that could have gone either way," said Head Coach Dave Borelli. "We're disappointed that we couldn't come away with this victory, but they simply played better than we did. We still have NCAA's this season and we need to use this match to help us improve down the road."
Tulane jumped out to an early 1-0 advantage after it claimed the doubles point. No. 35 Jenny Kuehn and Julie Smekodub picked up the first victory when they topped Helena Besovic and Kewa Nichols, 8-1, at the two position. Seniors Paige Brown and Karla Mancinas evened things up at the three line as they defeated Nancy Kockott and Ana Saaibi, 8-6. The pair is now 12-1 this season.
The deciding match at the one position between No. 32 Ana Cetnik and Story Tweedie-Yates and No. 40 Maria and Darya Ivanov came down to the tiebreaker. The Green Wave duo pulled off the upset and ended the TCU pair's 13-match winning streak by the count of 9-8 (3).
In singles, three of the six matches went to three sets as the team split, 3-3. No. 108 Kockott gave Tulane the two-point lead with her 6-3, 6-3 decision over freshman Andrea Morgado at the five spot. No. 16 Tweedie-Yates notched the first point for the Frogs when she defeated No. 124 M. Ivanov, 6-4, 6-4, at the one line. The senior is now 32-4 this season with a 16-match winning streak.
Cetnik evened the match at two when she defeated D. Ivanov in three sets at the four position. Cetnik was handled in the opening set, losing 6-1, but she fought back to win the match by the count of 6-3, 6-1. The Green Wave regained the advantage with a victory at six. Saaibi topped junior Gloriann Lopez in straight sets, 7-5, 7-5.
No. 55 Besovic won a tight match against No. 53 Kuehn at the two line to tie things up once again. The junior fell in the opening set 6-3, but she rebounded to claim the match by winning 6-3, 7-5. The win is her team-leading 33rd this season.
The tie was short lived as Smekodub topped Nichols just minutes after Besovic's victory. In the match, the TCU freshman came out on fire winning the opening set 6-0 and jumping out to a 5-2 lead in the second. Smekodub forced a third set when she won the tiebreaker in the second 7-6(4). In the decider, the Green Wave junior won 6-4 to give Tulane its third straight C-USA title.
The Frogs (20-4) will now wait for the NCAA selection show that will take place on Wednesday, May 4, at 3:45 p.m. CDT on ESPNews. Individuals chosen for the singles and doubles championships are announced May 5 by 5 p.m. on the NCAA's Web site.
First- and second-round team competition takes place on May 13-15 at 16 campus sites that have yet to be determined. The 16 teams advancing past the first and second rounds travel to Athens, Ga., to finish the remainder of the tournament over May 19-22. The NCAA Singles and Doubles Championships begin May 23 and conclude May 28.
#16 TULANE (23-4) 4, #17 TCU (20-4) 3
Order of singles finish - 5, 1, 4, 6, 2, *3
Order of doubles finish - 2, 3, *1
* Clinching point