Privateers avenge regular-season loss with 4-3 triumph in Southland Tournament
BEAUMONT, Texas – For the second time this season, the University of New Orleans women’s tennis team and McNeese found their match against each other tied 3-all, with the Cowgirls prevailing the first time around. On Friday afternoon, however, it was the Privateers who won the deciding match to get the overall victory and move on in the Southland Conference Tournament.
The match came down to the third singles court, where senior Anna Segarra Rius lost the opening set to her McNeese (12-11) counterpart 4-6 before prevailing in the second frame 7-5 to force the tiebreaker set with the overall contest tied 3-3. With a loss ending her collegiate career, the senior guaranteed at least one more match for New Orleans (15-8) with a 6-1 victory in the third set.
“I knew it was going to be a tough match,” head coach Burzis Kanga said. “This was a very close match, McNeese fought well. I’m proud of the way our team fought today, but we are far from done here yet. We have to get some rest and be ready to play tomorrow.”
McNeese took the early lead with victories at the first and third doubles position to claim the doubles point. The Cowgirls posted a 6-1, 6-1 score over junior Anja Luethi at the second singles position to quickly take a 2-0 advantage, but sophomore Trang Dao defeated her McNeese counterpart 6-3, 6-2 at the top flight before a 7-5, 6-1 triumph for freshman Claudette Gilhespie at the fourth slot knotted up the overall score. McNeese responded with a 7-6 (7-4), 6-4 win over senior Yasmine Rashad on court five, but a 6-4, 7-6 (7-2) decision in Brittany Johnson’s favor made it a 3-3 match.
With the win, the Privateers advance to the semifinals, where they will take on top-seed Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Saturday, April 29 at 2 p.m.
New Orleans 4, McNeese 3
1. Trang Dao (UNO) def. Giovanna Fioretti (MCN) 6-3, 6-2
2. Sarah Jurakova (MCN) def. Anja Luethi (UNO) 6-1, 6-1
3. Anna Segarra Rius (UNO) def. Hannah Brett (MCN) 4-6, 7-5, 6-1
4. Claudette Gilhespie (UNO) def. Charoline Erlandsson (MCN) 7-5, 6-1
5. Phonexay Chitdara (MCN) def. Yasmine Rashad (UNO) 7-6 (7-4), 6-4
6. Brittany Johnson (UNO) def. Stella Carra (MCN) 6-4, 7-6 (7-2)
1. Sarah Jurakova/Hannah Brett (MCN) def. Anna Segarra Rius/Anja Luethi (UNO) 6-1
2. Charoline Erlandsson/Vivien Borbely (MCN) vs. Claudette Gilhespie/Yasmine Rashad (UNO) 6-5, unfinished
3. Giovanna Fioretti/Phonexay Chitdara (MCN) def. Trang Dao/Brittany Johnson (UNO) 7-5