The Blue Devils entered Friday after losing their last five games to rivals Tobacco Road. This streak has now been extended to six.
No.9 Duke had a disappointing performance against his rival on North Carolina’s No.1 Road, falling to the Tar Heels 6-1 at the Cone-Kenfield Tennis Center in Chapel Hill.
The Blue Devils’ afternoon started off with tough doubles losses. In the first finish of the day, senior duo Kelly Chen and Hannah Zhao lost to North Carolinas Reilly Tran and Alle Sanford 6-2. And soon after, Meible Chi and Margaryta Bilokin fell 6-1 to Sara Daavettila and Cameron Morra, giving the Tar Heels the double point.
With the second Georgia Drummy sidelined with an ankle injury, Zhao made his first appearance in the ACC game this season, losing in singles to Tran who was ranked no rookie. 3 in the class of 20206-0, 6-0. Bilokin then fell to Makenna Jones 6-1, 6-2, while Chis won nine straight games with a 6-4, 6-2 loss to Fiona Crawley, the No.1-ranked rookie in the class of 2020 at the time. of the next match.
Berankova then lost 6-1, 6-4 to seal the Tar Heels victory and end any chance Duke (10-3, 5-2 in the ACC) had on a comeback.
[North Carolina] did a good hitting job first, they pushed us back a bit and we couldn’t recover, said head coach Jamie Ashworth. They were better from the start.
North Carolina (17-0, 7-0) came in and out of this game unbeaten, and present a rare type of opponent for a team still as strong as the Blue Devils.
There aren’t many opportunities to play where he wasn’t supposed to win on paper, Ashworth said.
While Duke entered as the underdog, that doesn’t mean he fell without a fight.
In the final match of the day, sophomore Chloe Beck beat Morrathe, the country’s sixth singles player, for her highest singles win and second top 10 win of the season. Despite losing the first set, Beck came from behind to force a final tiebreaker set, which she ultimately won 12-10.
I’m proud of myself for getting a win for the team even after losing, but I really play for my team so it hurts that we lost as a team, Beck said.
Tennis, often considered only at the professional level, is generally regarded as an individual sport. However, this season the Blue Devils are an example of the scale of college tennis in a team sport, which is evident by hearing the emotions of the players after every game, whether it translates into a win or a loss.
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Duke will be looking to bounce back at No. 15 in Virginia on March 27.
Our best tennis is still ahead of us, said Ashworth.
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