March 30, 2008
COLUMBIA, S.C. — The South Carolina women’s tennis team had its four-match unbeaten streak stopped by No. 13 Arkansas on Sunday. The Lady Razorbacks defeated the Gamecocks 5-2 at the USC Indoor Field House in Columbia, S.C., to improve to 13-6 and 6-2 in the SEC while Carolina fell to 11-6 and 4-4.
The Gamecocks lost all three doubles matches to begin the day. On court two, Nanar Airapetian and Maryori Franco won 8-1 against Suzanna Mansour and Megan McGavock. Jelena Rajic and Natasa Vuckovic led Audrey Bordeleau and Anouk Tigu 4-3 at the No. 3 position but lost the next four games before eventually losing 8-5 to put the Lady’Backs ahead 1-0. Ela Kaluder and Aurelija Miseviciute completed the sweep with an 8-6 decision over Gira Schofield and Ana Marija Zubori at the top spot.
The contest did not get much better for Carolina in the singles matches. Mansour lost on court four to Franco 6-1, 6-3 and the Gamecocks were unlucky at the No. 2 spot. Zubori won the first set 6-2 against Kaluder and was ahead 4-1 in the second, but in the ninth game with the score tied 4-all, Zubori suffered a knee injury and was unable to continue the match.
Arkansas clinched its sixth SEC victory at the No. 1 singles position with Miseviciute upending Schofield 6-4, 7-5. Schofield had two set points up 5-4 in the second on her serve, but the nation’s No. 1-ranked player always had an answer.
Vuckovic helped the Gamecocks avoid a shutout with a three-set victory over Tigu on court three. After winning the first set 6-2, Vuckovic jumped out to a 2-0 advantage in the second, but Tigu stormed back to win five straight games before taking the second 6-3. In the third, Vuckovic was down 4-2 and then mounted her own comeback by claiming four games in a row to win 6-4 and improve to 22-9 on the season.
The Lady Razorbacks won court five in straight sets, as Airapetian defeated McGavock 6-2, 6-2 to make the score 5-1. Rajic ended the day on a positive note for South Carolina, winning 5-7, 6-4, (10-1) against Bordeleau to improve to 3-2 in the SEC at the No. 6 singles position.
South Carolina travels to Alabama on Friday for its next match and then takes on Auburn two days later in Auburn, Ala.
#13 Arkansas (13-6, 6-2 SEC) def. #34 South Carolina (11-6, 4-4 SEC), 5-2
1. #1 Aurelija Miseviciute, UA, def. #44 Gira Schofield, USC, 6-4, 7-5
2. #122 Ela Kaluder, UA, def. #75 Ana Marija Zubori, USC, 2-6, 4-4 ret.
3. Natasa Vuckovic, USC, def. Anouk Tigu, UA, 6-2, 3-6, 6-4
4. Maryori Franco, UA, def. Suzanna Mansour, USC, 6-1, 6-3
5. Nanar Airapetian, UA, def. Megan McGavock, USC, 6-2, 6-2
6. Jelena Rajic, USC, def. Audrey Bordeleau, UA, 5-7, 6-4, (10-1)
Order of Finish: 4, 2, 1, 3, 5, 6
1. #32 Kaluder/Miseviciute, UA, def. #33 Schofield/Zubori, USC, 8-6
2. Airapetian/Franco, UA, def. McGavock/Mansour, USC, 8-1
3. Bordeleau/Tigu, UA, def. Rajic/Vuckovic, USC, 8-5
Order of Finish: 2, 3, 1