Kentucky Defeats Auburn, Advances to Quarterfinals in SEC Women's Tennis Tournament
April 17, 2014
COLUMBIA, Mo. – The No. 10 seed University of Kentucky women’s tennis team defeated No. 7 seed Auburn University, Thursday, in the second round of the 2014 Southeastern Conference Tournament, hosted by the University of Missouri at the Mizzou Tennis Complex. In a match that lasted nearly four hours, the Wildcats knocked off Auburn, 4-2.
With the win, UK advances to the quarterfinals and will take on No. 2 seed Vanderbilt Friday at 9 a.m. ET. Thursday’s victory marked the second time in the last three weeks that the Wildcats have defeated the Tigers, currently ranked No. 25 in the nation.
"We are grateful and blessed to be in the position that we're in," Kentucky head coach Carlos Drada said. "This match exemplifies the belief that our players have in their training and on each other. Auburn came with great energy and they dominated the first half of the match. Coming back from a deficit on five out of six courts is a tremendous feat and we're looking forward to playing another great match tomorrow."
In a tight doubles competition, No. 39 Caitlin McGraw and Cece Witten entered into a seesaw affair with No. 13 Pleun Burgmans and Emily Flickinger. The senior duo fought hard for the win, but ultimately fell, 8-6. Jakarta, Indonesia natives, Nadia Ravita and Aldila Sutjiadi, led most of the match with their biggest lead, 5-1. However, Auburn didn’t back down and tied the match at 7-all, requiring a tiebreak. In the tiebreak, the Kentucky duo fell, 8-7(3) and the doubles point was claimed for the Tigers.
The doubles point propelled Auburn throughout the first set in singles play, where the Tigers led on five of the six courts. Sophomore Kirsten Lewis was the lone Wildcat to win the first set, but the tide began to turn in the second sets for Kentucky. Ravita, Sutjiadi and junior Kelsey Dieters topped the Tigers in their second set and forced a final set.
Lewis dominated Jackie Kasler at the No. 5 singles position, winning the match in two sets. Her 6-4, 6-3 win tied the overall match for Kentucky. Auburn regained the lead with a 6-3, 6-3 win on court 6, but Kentucky didn’t stay down long as Sutjiadi handled business on court two and defeated No. 102 Emily Flickinger, 3-6, 6-2, 6-0.
In dramatic fashion, Ravita and Dieters were both at match point at No. 1 and No. 3 singles and Morin-Kougoucheff was tied 1-1 in the final set at No. 4. Kentucky would need at least two wins from the three remaining courts to advance to the quarterfinals.
Ravita delivered the win that gave Kentucky a 3-2 advantage. In a thrilling three-set match, No. 60 Ravita edged No. 42 Pleun Burgmans, 2-6, 6-2, 7-5. The overall match was clinched 30 seconds later behind Dieters’ victory on court 3. The Shelby Twp., Mich. native trounced Paula de Man, 2-6, 6-2, 6-4, giving UK the 4-2 triumph.
“Everyone fought hard today and we had a thrilling comeback to clinch the match,” Dieters said. “It gives us a lot of momentum for our match against Vanderbilt tomorrow. We’re excited about the win and we are looking forward to the opportunities ahead of us.”
While Kentucky boasts an all-time 23-9 record against Auburn in conference play, this is just Kentucky’s second time meeting the Tigers in the SEC Tournament, where the Wildcats have a 2-0 edge.
Kentucky (16-10) now awaits a matchup with No. 2 seed Vanderbilt on Friday. Vanderbilt received a double bye in the tournament after earning an 11-2 record in SEC play. The No. 11-ranked Commodores are 18-5 overall. The match is slated to begin at 9 a.m. ET at the Mizzou Tennis Complex.
Complete coverage of the 2014 SEC Women's Tennis Tournament can be found by visiting MUTigers.com. For live coverage of the matches, visit the SEC Tournament Central also located on the Mizzou Athletics homepage or follow @SECWTennis on twitter.
For updates on Kentucky women's tennis, follow Kentucky Women's Tennis on Twitter and Instagram @UKWomensTennis and like the Kentucky Women's Tennis page on Facebook.
Tennis Match Results Kentucky vs Auburn
Apr 17, 2014 at Columbia, Mo. (Mizzou Tennis Complex)
#38 Kentucky 4, #25 Auburn 2
1. #60 Nadia Ravita (UK) def. #42 Pleun Burgmans (AU) 2-6, 6-2, 7-5
2. Aldila Sutjiadi (UK) def. #102 Emily Flickinger (AU) 3-6, 6-2, 6-0
3. Kelsey Dieters (UK) def. Paula de Man (AU) 2-6, 6-2, 6-4
4. Michala Kucharova (AU) vs. Edmee Morin (UK) 7-6 (7-4), 5-7, 1-2, unfinished
5. Kirsten Lewis (UK) def. Jackie Kasler (AU) 6-4, 6-3
6. Jen Pfeifler (AU) def. Stephanie Fox (UK) 6-3, 6-2
1. #13 Pleun Burgmans/Emily Flickinger (AU) def. #39 CeCe Witten/Caitlin McGraw (UK) 8-6
2. Jackie Kasler/Jen Pfeifler (AU) def. Nadia Ravita/Aldila Sutjiadi (UK) 8-7 (7-3)
3. Paula de Man/Michala Kucharova (AU) vs. Kirsten Lewis/Edmee Morin (UK) 7-5, unfinished
Kentucky 16-10; National ranking #38
Auburn 16-10; National ranking #25
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2); Singles (5,6,2,1,3)