#2 College of Charleston 4, #3 UNC Greensboro 1
ELON, N.C. ? Second-seeded College of Charleston topped 3rd-seeded UNC Greensboro 4-1 in the semifinals of the 2009 Southern Conference Tennis Championship Saturday morning. The Cougars advance to the final to take on the winner of the Furman-Davidson match which is also being played Saturday morning.
College of Charleston won the doubles point with wins at the #3 and #1 positions. Holly Dowse and Caroline Newman topped UNCG’s Jessica Eblen and Britney Cloer 8-3 at #3 to start the match. Laura Borza and Anna Lee Evans defeated Alejandra Guerra and Arelle VonStrolley 8-2 at #1 to clinch the doubles point.
Evans gave the Cougars a 2-0 lead with a 6-0, 6-1 win over Cloer at #3 singles. UNCG’s Guerra cut the lead to one with a 6-1, 6-0 win over Borza at #1 but Kinsey Casey gave Charleston a 3-1 lead, picking up a 6-0, 6-2 win over Eblen. Newman clinched the match for the Cougars with a 6-2, 6-2 win over VonStrolley at #3 singles.
# 1 Furman 4, # 5 Davidson 1
ELON, N.C. ? The top-seeded Furman Paladins advanced to the championship match of the 2009 Southern Conference Women’s Tennis Tournament with a 4-1 victory over No. 5 seed Davidson Saturday at the Jimmy Powell Tennis Center. The Paladins started the match by winning the doubles point and claimed three of the four six singles matches that were decided to earn the team victory.
The Paladins (17-7) earned what turned out to be a hotly-contested doubles point. Furman’s Jessica Preeg and Susan Bitetti claimed an 8-4 win at No. 3 doubles over Ali Gores and Molly McDevitt. Davidson’s Alison Rauh and Lora Dushanova pulled out a 9-7 victory at No. 2 doubles over Lauren Tomory and Jennifer Betts. Rauh and Dushanova had to hold off a late rally, as they saw a 7-3 lead evaporate but were able to pull out the victory.
The No. 1 doubles match was a back-and-forth affair. After Davidson’s Michele Fanney and Virginia Berry took an early 3-0 lead, Furman’s Laura Gioia and Monica Arguello surged back to claim a 5-4 advantage before taking an 8-6 decision.
Gioia, the 2009 Southern Conference Player of the Year, cruised to a 6-1, 6-0 victory over Fanney to give the Paladins a 2-0 lead. Davidson’s Lora Dushanova picked up Davidson’s (12-11) only point of the match with a 6-4, 6-3 win over Jennifer Betts at No. 6 singles.
Susan Bitetti topped Ali Gores, 6-4, 6-2 at No. 4 singles before Jessica Preeg’s 6-2, 7-5 win at No. 3 singles clinched the victory.
Furman and College of Charleston will square off for the conference tournament championship at 10:00 a.m. Sunday. The Paladins have won five straight tournament championships, while the Cougars won the conference tournament in 2003.