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'We had good energy' - Auburn women's tennis advances in NCAAs
May 13, 2016

<em> Auburn is hosting its first women's tennis NCAA regional. </em>
Auburn is hosting its first women's tennis NCAA regional.

By Jeff Shearer

AUBURN, Ala - Hosting an NCAA regional for the first time, Auburn’s women’s tennis team looked right at home Friday, beating Alcorn State, 4-0 at Yarbrough Tennis Center.

The No. 11 Tigers will play No. 22 Arizona State Saturday at 1 p.m. in the second round, with the winner advancing to the Sweet 16. The Sun Devils defeated North Carolina State, 4-1.

The Tigers had not played a match in three weeks, since the second round of the SEC Championships.

“We knew there were going to be some kinks to get out,” Auburn coach Lauren Spencer said. “We started really well in the doubles. We had good energy and did what we needed to do to win the doubles point. I was really proud about that.

“We came out a little slow in our top singles matches,” Spencer said. “Once we got settled in, I think the girls did a really good job of taking care of business. No. 4, 5 and 6 were very quick to get the first sets. Once that happened, our top kind of settled down.”

Pleun Burgmans clinched the match for Auburn.

Burgmans and partner Alizee Michaud, the nation’s No. 8 doubles team, won 6-0.

Andie Dikosavljevic and Alannah Griffin clinched the doubles point for Auburn.

“I thought we came out really well in doubles, even though we hadn’t played a match for three weeks.” Burgmans said. “Started off a little slow in singles, but got ourselves back and played good tennis.”

It will be a brief celebration for the Tigers. The No. 22 Sun Devils beat North Carolina State, 4-1 on Friday.

“We’ve got to play better tomorrow,” Spencer said. “We know we have to raise the level. They’re very tough from 1 to 6. If we play our best tennis, I think we do come out the W, but we’ve got to play at a very high, championship level. And it’s going to have to be from start to finish.

“We know it’s going to be gritty and tough. And we think we can outlast anyone,” Spencer said.

Temperatures reached the 80s on a sunny afternoon. Spencer is hoping for more humidity on Saturday, to create a home-court advantage.

“This is what we wanted. This is what we’ve been training in for the last couple weeks, so we’re used to it,” Spencer said. “We do well in this heat. It suits us really well.”

Griffin won her match, 6-1, 6-2 to give Auburn a 2-0 lead. Caroline Turner won 6-0, 6-0, to make it 3-0, setting the stage for Burgmans’ clincher.

“We have our eye on Tulsa,” said Spencer, referring to the site of the NCAA Championships. “We’re going to have to bring it tomorrow.”

Jeff Shearer is a Senior Writer at Follow him on Twitter:



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