AUBURN, Ala. – No. 13 Auburn women’s tennis earned a hard-fought win against No. 17 Miami (Fl.), defeating the Hurricanes by a score of 4-2 on Sunday at the Yarbrough Tennis Center in the ITA Kick-Off Auburn Regional Championship Match. With the win, the Tigers advance to the ITA National Team Indoor Championships for the second-straight season.
“In my opinion, this was basically the toughest second round Kick-Off that we have ever played in,” Auburn head coach Lauren Spencer said. “Miami is an extremely good team. I expect them to be a top-10 team by the end of the year. We told the girls that if you can beat Miami, who is extremely strong from one to six and have incredible doubles, you deserve to go to National Indoors.”
Freshman Jaeda Daniel, the No. 53-rated player in the nation, had the match clinching point in a thrilling 3-set victory over No. 41 Sinead Lohan. Daniel took the first set in tiebreaking fashion, winning 7-6 (7-5) before falling in the second set 0-6. With Auburn holding a slim 3-2 advantage, the Port Charlotte, Fla. native then took charge in the final set, winning 6-3 to punch the Tigers’ ticket to the national championships.
“Jaeda’s performance was lights out,” Spencer said. “She wants to be one of the best college players. She wants to be a professional, and that’s basically what I challenged her to do, ‘If you want to be able to go and play in a grand slam, you’re going to have to beat Miami.’”
Georgie Axon and Alannah Griffin kicked things off for the Tigers in doubles on court three, defeating Miami’s Lohan and Ulyana Shirokova 6-3. The British duo are now 3-0 this season. Taylor Russo and Madeline Meredith clinched the doubles point with a 6-3 win, their fifth win as partners on the year.
“I was very proud of our doubles,” Spencer said. “Miami has a really, really good doubles team and I felt like we came out in our doubles, especially on court three to help us out. When things got tight, I thought that the girls did a really good job of staying aggressive and staying together as a team.”
Miami tied the match 1-1 after No. 77 Taylor Russo lost a hard-fought match to No. 36 Estella Perez-Somarriba, however, Meredith, a freshman from Birmingham, Ala., quickly gave the Tigers a 2-1 advantage with a 6-4, 6-2 win on court four. All-SEC senior Alizee Michaud then gave Auburn their third point of the match with a come from behind 4-6, 6-0, 6-4 win over Daniella Roldan.
“Singles was tough. Really, really tough,” Spencer said. “From the first strike we really had to go out and play our game. We kept saying, don’t worry about one point or two points, it’s going to be a long day of tennis. We had a couple of people, like Alizee, losing the first set and then coming back to win the second and third sets, and that really helped us.”
Auburn will make stops at Cornell and Princeton on Feb. 2nd and 4th, respectively, before heading to Madison, Wis., for the ITA National Team Indoor Championships. Feb. 9-12.
Singles 1. #36 E. Perez-Somarriba (UM) def. #77 Taylor Russo (AUBURN) 6-2, 6-3
2. #53 Jaeda Daniel (AUBURN) def. #41 Sinead Lohan (UM) 7-6 (7-5), 0-6, 6-3
3. Alizee Michaud (AUBURN) def. Daniella Roldan (UM) 4-6, 6-0, 6-4
4. Madeline Meredith (AUBURN) def. Dominika Paterova (UM) 6-4, 6-2
5. Andie Dikosavljevic (AUBURN) vs. Ulyana Shirokova (UM) 5-7, 7-5, 2-3, uf
6. Ana Madcur (UM) def. Alannah Griffin (AUBURN) 6-2, 7-6 (7-3)
Doubles Alizee Michaud/Jaeda Daniel (AUBURN) vs. Ana Madcur/E. Perez-Somarriba (UM) 3-5, uf
Taylor Russo/Madeline Meredith (AUBURN) def. Daniella Roldan/Dominika Paterova (UM) 6-3
Georgie Axon/Alannah Griffin (AUBURN) def. Sinead Lohan/Ulyana Shirokova (UM) 6-3
Order of Finish: Doubles (3-2), Singles (1, 4, 3, 6, 2)