Minnesota improved to 11-1 this season with a come-from-behind 4-3 win at No. 50 LSU Saturday afternoon. The Gophers are now 5-0 on the road this season and finished their non-conference schedule with a 10-1 record.
For the fourth time this year, Minnesota lost the doubles point but still won the match. LSU staked victories at No. 1 and No. 2 to claim the doubles point. The Gophers’ lone doubles win was at the third position and was an 8-7 (2) victory by Alexa Palen and Emilie Renault against Ariel Morton and Ebie Wilson.
The Gophers have shown no fear this season when dropping the doubles point and that theme continued Saturday at LSU’s W.T. Dub Robinson Stadium.
Alexa Palen quickly evened things up for the Gophers with a 6-0, 6-1 win at No. 1 singles against Olivia Howlett. Palen is now 11-0 in singles this year and only two of her matches have gone beyond two sets.
Freshman Aria Lambert, who was in the lineup for the first time since Feb. 26, put Minnesota up 2-1 after a 6-3, 6-2 win against Yvette Vlaar at the sixth position.
LSU leveled the match 2-2 after picking up a win at the third position, but Doron Muravnik put Minnesota up 3-2 after rallying for a win at No. 5 singles. Muravnik lost the first set 4-6 to Ebie Wilson, but won the second and third sets 6-0, 6-2, respectively.
LSU prevailed fourth singles and the match came down to Natallia Pintusava at the second position. Pintusava won a marathon match 6-4, 4-6, 7-5 to secure Minnesota’s eighth straight win. Pintusava also clinched Minnesota’s 4-3 win at Tulane on Thursday with a three-set win at No. 1.
Minnesota now heads to Michigan State next Saturday before traveling to No. 18 Michigan to complete a stretch of five consecutive road matches. The Gophers next home match is March 30 against No. 13 Northwestern.
Tennis Match Results
Minnesota vs LSU
Mar 17, 2012 at LSU
(W.T. Dub Robinson Stadium)
#34 Minnesota 4, #50 LSU 3
1. Alexa Palen
(MINN) def. Olivia Howlett (LSU) 6-0, 6-1
4. Keri Frankenberger (LSU) def. Julia Courter
(MINN) 3-6, 6-4, 6-2
Minnesota 11-1; National ranking #34
LSU 7-6; National ranking #50
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (1,6,3,5,4,2)