Saturday May 22, 2010Women's Tennis Marches Into NCAA Semifinals, defeats Miami 4-0
Senior Anastasia Revzina provided the clinching singles victory.
The Gators played extremely focused doubles and captured the doubles point after collecting victories on courts two and three, with the number one pair leading when play was halted.
one of the toughest matches we’ve played all year. The 4-0 score clearly wasn’t
how the match really was,” UF head coach
Roland Thornqvist said. “It was very closely
Thornqvist prepared his team well, as the first singles match needed one hour and 45 minutes to conclude. Surprisingly, it was court No. 1 that provided the first singles result, as UF’s ninth-ranked freshman Lauren Embree (Marco Island, Fla.) upset seventh-ranked senior Laura Vallverdu, 6-4, 6-2, and gave the Gator a 2-0 lead in the team scoring.
Vallverdu, last year’s NCAA Singles runner-up, began a long first game by holding serve and broke the Gator rookie for a 2-0 lead. That sparked a run of four consecutive breaks, with Embree holding for 3-all. She then broke Vallverdu in the seventh game and the remainder of the set was on-serve, as Embree closed out the opening frame. The second set started with a trio of breaks, before Embree stopped the trend by holding for a 3-1 lead. She captured another break in the seventh game and served out for her 15th consecutive singles win, with the victory marking the highest-ranked opponent the Gator rookie has defeated in her young career.
“Laura’s a great player, a senior, and she’s had a lot of good results,” Embree said. “I knew it wasn’t going to be easy and I had to play my best, hit every ball deep and keep playing hard until the last point.
“I’m so excited. I have so many different emotions right now,” Embree shared. “After I won my singles match, I just wanted to rush over to Joanna (Mather) and Caroline’s (Hitimana) courts because I knew they needed some help on those courts (that we not played next to the other four). We’re tough at every court and that’s makes us a strong team.”
Joanna Mather, a native of
“The match was pretty intense. I had a lot of fans cheering for me and that helped a lot,” Mather said. “I tried to stay calm. Dave (Balogh, Associate head coach) really helped me with that and staying focused.
“I’m just so excited! I’ve never had this feeling before, being in this situation with the girls after the whole year,” continued Mather. “We’ve been training so hard and all of our hard work is finally showing.”
remaining four singles matches were extremely close when Mather closed out her
That’s when the Gators dug deep.
It was senior
Revzina seemed to have her way with Mills in the first set, but the Hurricane youngster stormed back in the second and forced a deciding third, where she rode an early break for a 3-1 lead. Revzina settled and got the set back on-serve with a break in the sixth and then captured one final break in the 10th and final game to earn her 95th career singles victory, as well as her 70th in dual match action.
“I played really well in the first set and didn’t give her any chances to adjust to my game so it was pretty quick,” Revzina said. “After the first set, she took a bathroom break and I lost my focus. She stepped up her game, served better. In the third set, it was tougher. I am a senior and knew I had to keep playing.
really happy for the team,” Revzina continued. “I
through Revzina’s third set, UF’s
Allie Will (
Senior Marrit Boonstra (The Netherlands) seemed down and out against Anna Bartenstein, but the Gator senior never quit and found a way to win a second-set tiebreaker. Action had not yet begun in the final set when play was halted.
After winning her first set 6-4 against Claudia Wasilewski, Hitimana’s second set was also very tight and on-serve entering the ninth game, where Wasilewski earned a break to begin a four-game trend, as Hitimana broke for force a tiebreaker. The Gator freshman led the breaker 5-3, when play was abandoned.
through some ups and downs in singles, but through it all, we found a way to
“We’ve talked about those types of things since August, in that to play well here it goes well beyond forehands and backhands,” Thornqvist continued. “It’s about heart and toughness and fight and we showed all of that today. I’m really proud of them.”
NCAA Women’s Tennis Championships Quarterfinals
Dan Magill Tennis Complex
Saturday, May 22, 2010
Complete Team Results
Stanford d. Baylor, 4-2
UF’s Individual Match Breakdown
3-Carolina Hitimana/Anastasia Revzina, UF d. Danielle Mills/Claudia Wasilewski, UM 8-3*
5-Joanna Mather, UF d. #113 Gabriela Mejia, UM, 6-4, 6-2
Order of Finish: Doubles-2, 3*; Singles-1, 5, 4*