Lexington, Ky. The No. 23 LSU women’s tennis team handed the Kentucky Wildcats their first loss of the season after a rough 4-3 victory on Saturday afternoon at the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex.
With the win, LSU moves to 6-0 in the season and 1-0 in SEC play, while the Wildcats drop to 8-1 and 0-1 in the SEC.
“Great effort and a brave performance from our team today”, co-head coach Michael Sell said. “Today we showed that the depth of our line-up is a great strength of this team. take the win to play better in certain parts of the match, but this team continues to improve and we are proud of the growth we are seeing. We will enjoy the win before getting ready for our No. 9 game Vanderbilt on Monday. “
Seniors Taylor Bridges and Paris Corley earned their fifth doubles win of the doubles season and first ranked win of the season, beating the No. 57 ranked duo of Lesedi Jacobs and Anastasia Tkachenko in a tight 6-4 match at No. 3 doubles.
Kentucky took a back to No. 1 moments later when Akvile Parazinskaite and partner Carlota Molina beat senior’s No. 14 duo Eden Richardson and sophomores Nina Geissler in an extended 7-5 game.
The Wildcats took the colon after Carla Girbau and Elizabeth Stevens survived sophomores Safiya Carrington and Maggie Cubitt in a 7-3 tiebreaker at number 2.
The number 83-ranked Carrington took LSU’s first point of the afternoon in the number 2 singles against Molina. Carrington took the first set 6-4 and followed that with a 6-3 win in the second to claim a straight win and her sixth win of the season.
Kentucky took a 2-1 lead after Parazinskaite beat No. 41 Bridges at No. 1. Bridges claimed the first set with a score of 6-4 before Parazinskaite hit back with a 6-2 win in the second to extend the game. In the third set, Parazinskaite took an early lead and eventually won 6-2 to claim the victory.
With the number 3, Richardson made it 2-2 this afternoon by winning over Stevens. Richardson and Stevens contested an even first set with Richardson narrowly ahead of Stevens 7-5. Stevens would level in the second set and win 6-3 to force a third. Richardson rebounded from her performance in the second set, dropping her only game to win 6-1 and take her fourth win of the double season.
The Wildcats made it 3-2 with a win at number 4, where Jacobs defeated Corley. Jacobs took the first set 6-2 before Corley hit back in the second to win 6-3. The third set was an exciting match, with Jacobs holding Corley 6-4 and claiming the win.
Geissler brought the game to 3-3 after a straight set victory over Fiona Arresse at number 6. Geissler got off to a quick start and took the first set 6-2 strong. The second set was similar, with Geissler in control, eventually winning 6-3 to claim her team-high fifth win of the double season.
The match came down to number 5, where Cubitt had to record Girbau. The first set was back and forth, with Cubitt gaining the upper hand and taking a 6-4 victory. In the second set, Cubitt took the lead, holding back a late rise from Girbau to win 6-3 and take the 4-3 win for LSU.
LSU travels to Nashville, Tennessee for a Top 25 game against No. 9 Vanderbilt at noon CT on Monday, Feb. 22.
For more information on the LSU women’s tennis program, follow the Tigers on Twitter @lsuwten, on Instagram @LSUWTen and onwww.Facebook.com/lsuwten
# 23 LSU 4, Kentucky 3
February 20, 2021 in Lexington, Kentucky (Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex)
LSU 6-0; National ranking # 23
Order of Arrival: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (2,1,3,4,6,5)
Official: Marcus Lee
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