No. 25 Women's Tennis defeats No. 22 Oklahoma, 5-2
April 10, 2011
AUSTIN, Texas - No. 25 Texas (12-6, 7-2 Big 12) dropped the doubles point but posted five singles victories and rallied to a 5-2 victory over No. 22 Oklahoma (14-5, 6-2 Big 12) Sunday afternoon on Senior Day at UT's Penick-Allison Tennis Center.
Oklahoma opened the match by taking the doubles point, though Texas began the session by taking the first decision at No. 1 doubles, where UT's Amanda Craddock and Cierra Gaytan-Leach scored an 8-3 win over the Sooners' Ana-Maria Constantinescu and Alice Radu. Oklahoma's Tara Eckel and Marie-Pier Huet followed with an 8-4 win over UT's Juliana Gajic and Maggie Mello at third doubles to leave the deciding match at second doubles, which featured a seesaw battle with Texas' Krista Damico and Aeriel Ellis against OU's Mia Lancaster and Whitney Ritchie.
UT assumed a 5-3 lead before OU took the next four games and claimed a 7-5 lead. Texas broke the Sooners' serve in the following game and held serve to even the match at seven. UT broke the Sooners once more to take an 8-7 lead, but OU broke back to even the match at eight and force a tiebreaker. OU jumped out to a 6-2 lead in the tiebreaker, and Texas pulled within 6-5 before OU took the final point to claim the tiebreaker, and, in effect, the doubles point.
Texas would soon even the tally in the singles session, as Oklahoma's Ritchie retired at third singles and yielded a 7-5, 2-1 (ret.) victory to UT's Mello. Texas took the lead for good at sixth singles, as UT's Gaytan-Leach dealt OU's Maria Kalashnikova a 6-0, 6-3 defeat.
Texas extended its lead to 3-1 at first singles, where Damico finished off OU's 102nd-ranked Constantinescu by a 6-4, 6-4 count. The Horns clinched the victory at second singles as Ellis outlasted OU's Radu at second singles, 7-5, 4-6, 6-4. Oklahoma added a victory at fourth singles, and UT's Gajic finished off a third-set match tiebreak win over OU's Lancaster to close out the match.
Texas finishes off the regular season next weekend when it visits Nebraska and Iowa State.
"We were disappointed to not get the doubles point, but such is life. Oklahoma was fighting as hard as we were, and sometimes it happens. I'm proud of our performances. Juliana Gajic had a breakthrough match and started to play some big-time tennis. Krista Damico had two wins at No. 1 singles this weekend, and that was excellent. It was great to see Aeriel Ellis get a couple of more under her belt. Maggie Mello, what can you say? She is such a great competitor. Our little freshman down at No. 6, Cierra Gaytan-Leach, is playing the way she should be and is making it look easy."
#25 Texas 5, #22 Oklahoma 2