Commodores fall short in Sweet 16
May 15, 2014
ATHENS, Ga. - The Vanderbilt women's tennis concluded its season Thursday night in heartbreaking fashion against No. 8 Florida. The 10th-ranked Commodores fell 4-0 in the 2014 NCAA Division I Tennis Tournament round of 16 match at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens, Ga.
The Commodores (21-7) and the Gators (22-5) came into the match knowing doubles would be crucial, as both teams were undefeated after winning the point and under .500 when dropping it.
Right from the get-go it was apparent the point would be decided at the No. 1 or No. 2 position, as the Gators ran away with it on court three, eventually winning 8-2.
At No. 2 doubles Frances Altick and Marie Casares went back-and-forth against No. 27 Sofie Oyen and Belinda Woolcock. The Vandy duo eventually broke though in the 10th game earning a break to go up 6-4. Serving for it at 7-5, Altick and Casares had three match points, but the Gator duo battled and earned the break to force a tiebreak.
Meanwhile, at court one, No. 20 Lauren Mira and Courtney Colton took on UF's Alexandra Cercone and Kourtney Keegan. The match stayed on serve until the UF pair earned a break in the eighth game to go up 5-3. The teams traded holds until the 12th game when Colton had trouble dropping in her first serve. The Gators had three match points but the Vandy duo worked it to deuce. After two more match points the Gator duo converted, clinching the point with an 8-4 win.
Altick and Casares went unfinished at No. 2, leading 5-2 in the breaker.
After dropping the doubles point the Commodores needed to come out and regain some momentum in singles, but Florida was able to take four of six first sets, making the hole too deep to climb out of.
Casares and Mira earned hard fought first sets for the Dores, but it was the Gators who jumped to a 3-0 lead taking matches on No. 2 and No. 5. Altick fell 6-2, 6-0 at two, followed shortly by a 6-2, 6-2 loss at No. 5 by Antal.
Despite dropping four first sets the Commodores fought valiantly, earning splits at No. 1 and No. 4 to extend the match. Georgina Sellyn earned a 6-4 second set win, after falling 6-4 in the first at No. 1 and Colton got the split at No. 4 winning 6-4.
The Gators forced third sets at both three and six, bringing the match down to four three-setters - Vanderbilt needing all four, Florida just one.
Casares and Colton went back-and-forth in their third sets, but it was at No. 1 where the Gators would pull away.
Sellyn, having already received a medical timeout, was fighting through a lot of pain in her previously injured ankle. Unfortunatly, for the Vandy sophomore and the Commodores Florida's No. 1 Brianna Morgan used her mobility to her advantage. She took the third and final set 6-1, clinching the match and sending the Gators to the round of eight.
Vanderbilt ends its season with 21 wins, a mark the program hadn't reached since 2006 when it finished with a record of 23-5. The Commodores return all but one, senior Lauren Mira, to the 2015 team with high hopes of making another push at a NCAA crown.
WOMEN'S ROUND OF 16: #8 FLORIDA (22-5) def. #9 VANDERBILT (21-7), 4-0
Doubles (Order of finish: 3,1)
1. Alexandra Cercone/Kourtney Keegan (FLORIDA) def. #20 Lauren Mira/Courtney Colton (VANDERBILT), 8-4
Singles (Order of finish: 2,5,1)
1. #16 Brianna Morgan (FLORIDA) def. #64 Georgina Sellyn (VANDERBILT), 6-4, 4-6, 6-1
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