April 9, 2010
AUBURN- The No. 57 Auburn women's tennis team dropped a tight 4-3 battle to No. 18 Ole Miss Friday afternoon at the City of Auburn/Yarbrough Tennis Center. Auburn's day was highlighted by the doubles tandem of Mrythe Molenveld and Paulina Schippers defeating the No. 13 doubles team in the country, Kristi Boxx and Karen Njissen as Auburn captured the doubles point before Ole Miss won four singles matches to take the team victory.
"Ole Mis is ranked 18th in the country and we went toe to toe with them. This showed that we are doing a lot of things right. It was great that we won the doubles point," said head coach Tim Gray. "
Auburn (8-9, 2-7) earned the all important doubles point, even after freshman Caroline Thornton and sophomore Daniela Vukadinovic were defeated 8-1 by Ole Miss' (12-4, 6-3) Abby Guthrie and Laura van de Stroet in No. 3 doubles.
The Tiger tandem of young and old then pulled off a huge upset. Senior Myrthe Molenveld and freshman Paulina Schippers defeated the No. 13 doubles team in the nation, Kristi Boxx and Karen Njissen, 8-5 in a critical juncture in the match in the No. 1 position.
Moving to singles action, the Tigers stretched their lead to 2-0 as Chifichieva, ranked No. 54, defeated Ole Miss' Boxx in straight sets, 6-2, 6-2 in a matchup of nationally-ranked opponents at the No. 1 position.
Following the defeat at No. 1 singles, Ole Miss rattled off four-consecutive singles victories. The streak began at second-flight singles, as van de Stroet defeated Hastenrath at No. 5, and ended with No. 101 Connor Vogel defeat Auburn's Molenveld 6-4, 6-3 in the No. 3 position.
The final match of the day saw Ole Miss' Gabby Rangel win the first set against Schippers in the No. 6 position, 6-4. Schippers bounced back in the second-set, taking the set 7-5. Schippers, riding the high of winning the second-set, won the tie-break to take the match 4-6, 7-5, (1-0).
"We showed a lot better fight in the singles, we just didn't capitalize on opportunities and that was the difference. They are a very good team and we knew that coming in. We have won the three of the last four against Ole Miss, but it has always been a war. If we can continue this kind of play I like our chances of making the NCAA Tournament, but we have to continue to play hard like today," said Gray.
Auburn returns to action Sunday at 1 p.m. CT to face No. 66 Mississippi St. from the City of Auburn/Yarbrough Tennis Center. Live stats will be available via AuburnTigers.com
#18 Ole Miss 4, #57 Auburn 3
1. #54 Fani Chifchieva (AU-W) def. #57 Kristi Boxx (MISS) 6-2, 6-2
2. Karen Njissen (MISS) def. Daniela Vukadinovic (AU-W) 6-1, 6-2
3. #101 Connor Vogel (MISS) def. Myrthe Molenveld (AU-W) 6-4, 6-3
4. Abby Guthrie (MISS) def. Caroline Thornton (AU-W) 6-4, 6-2
5. Laura van de Stroet (MISS) def. Jil Hastenrath (AU-W) 6-1, 6-3
6. Paulina Schippers (AU-W) def. Gabby Rangel (MISS) 4-6, 7-5, 1-0 (11-9)
1. Myrthe Molenveld/Paulina Schippers (AU-W) def. #13 Kristi Boxx/Karen Njissen (MISS) 8-5
2. Fani Chifchieva/Jil Hastenrath (AU-W) def. Connor Vogel/Gabby Rangel (MISS) 9-7
3. Abby Guthrie/Laura van de Stroet (MISS) def. Caroline Thornton/Daniela Vukadinovic (AU-W) 8-1
Ole Miss 11-4 (5-3 SEC); National ranking #18
Auburn 8-8 (2-6 SEC); National ranking #57
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (1,5,4,2,3,6)
For additional information, contact: Scott Kemps (334) 844-9900.