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April 4, 2008

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — The South Carolina women’s tennis team picked up a 4-2 victory over Alabama on Friday in Tuscaloosa, Ala., at the Hank Crisp Indoor Facility. It was South Carolina’s first win in Tuscaloosa since 2002. The Gamecocks improved to 12-6 overall and 5-4 in the SEC while the Crimson Tide fell to 6-12 and 2-7.

South Carolina trailed 1-0 heading to singles play after losing at courts two and three in doubles. Gira Schofield and Ana Marija Zubori won 8-2 for the Gamecocks at one over Paulina Bigos and Andrea Brenes. At two doubles, Meritt Emery and Tiffany Welcher defeated Megan McGavock and Suzanna Mansour 8-2, and Shelley Godwin and Bianca Svensson won 8-6 at the No. 3 position over Jelena Rajic and Natasa Vuckovic to clinch the point for the Tide.

The Gamecocks turned their misfortune in doubles around for singles play, winning the top three positions with relative ease. Zubori came through first at the second spot with a 6-2, 6-1 triumph over Bigos and Vuckovic was next to finish against Alice Tunaru by scores of 6-2, 6-2. Schofield pushed Carolina’s lead to 3-1 when she upended Welcher 6-4, 6-3 at No. 1 singles.

Emery gave Alabama its first and only point in singles at the No. 4 slot with a 7-5, 6-2 decision against Mansour. McGavock put the match in the books for South Carolina by defeating Brenes 6-4, 6-3 on court six. Rajic and Godwin had their match at five singles suspended in a third set with Godwin ahead 2-1.

South Carolina travels to Auburn, Ala., for its next match Sunday at 2 p.m.

#30 South Carolina (12-6, 5-4 SEC) def. #75 Alabama (6-12, 2-7 SEC), 4-2

1. #44 Gira Schofield, USC, def. Tiffany Welcher, UA, 6-4, 6-3
2. #70 Ana Marija Zubori, USC, def. Paulina Bigos, UA, 6-2, 6-1
3. Natasa Vuckovic, USC, def. Alice Tunaru, UA, 6-2, 6-2
4. Meritt Emery, UA, def. Suzanna Mansour, USC, 7-5, 6-2
5. Jelena Rajic, USC, vs. Shelley Godwin, UA, 4-6, 6-1, 1-2 susp.
6. Megan McGavock, USC, def. Andrea Brenes, UA, 6-4, 6-3

Order of Finish: 2, 3, 1, 4, 6

1. #37 Schofield/Zubori, USC, def. Bigos/Brenes, UA, 8-2
2. Emery/Welcher, UA, def. McGavock/Mansour, USC, 8-2
3. Godwin/Bianca Svensson, UA, def. Rajic/Vuckovic, USC, 8-6

Order of Finish: 1, 2, 3