Ellis falls in semifinals at ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships
Nov. 6, 2010
FLUSHING, N.Y. -- Texas sophomore Aeriel Ellis took the first set and nearly the second before California's second-seeded Jana Juricova rallied to a three-set victory Saturday in the singles semifinals at the ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships.
Looking to become UT's first singles finalist at the ITA National Indoors since Lucie Ludvigova in 1994, Ellis stormed to a 6-2 opening-set win over Cal's Juricova.
"Aeriel came into the match confident and ready," UT assistant coach Darija Klaic said. "Aeriel just kept making big shots like she had all week and really put pressure on her opponent. She played a very big first set, physically and mentally."
Trailing 3-1 in the second set, Ellis held serve and broke Juricova to even the set at three. Ellis and Juricova held serve the next four games until Juricova broke Ellis for a 6-5 lead. Juricova held serve in the next game to take the second set, 7-5.
Juricova opened up a 4-1 lead in the final set before Ellis broke and pulled within 4-3. Leading 5-4, Juricova held serve one last time to nail down the win with a 6-4 third-set victory.
"It was a battle until the very end," Klaic added. "She left it all out there. But she takes a lot of confidence from this tournament with the caliber of players she has beaten here in New York, with a win over the No. 3 seed and nearly a win over the No. 2 seed. Reaching the semifinals at a national championship event can only help her even more in the spring."
The 2010 Big 12 Conference Newcomer of the Year, Ellis completes play at her fifth consecutive national championship event.
ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships
(2) Jana Juricova (California) def. Aeriel Ellis (UT) - 2-6, 7-5, 6-4