April 13, 2012
For the first time since 2003, the Minnesota women's tennis team defeated Big Ten foe Indiana, sweeping the 47th-ranked Hoosiers 7-0 on Friday afternoon at the Baseline Tennis Center. The win for the No. 31 Gophers was their seventh all-time in 39 matches against Indiana and improved the team's conference record to 4-4.
"It was a great team performance from top to bottom," said head coach Tyler Thomson. "Everybody competed extremely well."
A momentous doubles competition victory helped propel Minnesota to its 14th overall win on the spring season.
The 45th-ranked duo in the nation of senior Magdalena Wiecha and sophomore Natallia Pintusava got the match started by improving to 11-2 with an 8-4 triumph over Indiana's Sophie Garre and Kate Klyczek.
At No. 2 after falling behind 6-1 early, the junior tandem of Alexa Palen and Doron Muravnik fought its way back for a point-saving 9-7 win to clinch the point. Palen and Muravnik are now 5-2 together.
"Winning the doubles point really made the difference," Thomson said. "We just stole the point and got a huge amount of momentum because of it. It was a really clutch comeback by Palen and Muravnik.
The Gophers worked quickly to secure the team victory after taking the 1-0 lead.
After all six singles players won their first sets for Minnesota, Muravnik cushioned the Gopher lead by finishing off a 6-2, 6-2 win. Sophomore Yuliana Umanets, the last player to finish her first set, then put Minnesota on the brink of the team win by completing a straight-set victory over Kayla Fujimoto at the sixth position, 6-4, 6-4.
Freshman Tereza Brichacova made the final result definite by dispatching Alecia Kauss 6-3, 6-3 at No. 4 and Lambert defeated Murdy at No. 5 in straight sets soon after to make it 5-0.
Palen added to the Gophers' point total by topping Evgeniya Vertesheva 6-2, 6-4 to improve to 13-5 and put a halt top a five-match losing streak. Pintusava then completed the sweep by upsetting 65th-ranked Hureau in three sets at the top position.
"We have a great level of competitiveness as a team right now," said Thomson. "We're definitely gaining a lot of confidence with every match."
The win came nine years to the day after the Gophers last beat Indiana, a match that Minnesota also swept 7-0.
The Gophers will wrap up the week with a home match against No. 34 Purdue at noon on Sunday. Minnesota will then finish out the regular season with a road match at No. 17 Nebraska on Apr. 20 and one final home match against Iowa two days later.
Apr. 13, 2012
Baseline Tennis Center Minneapolis, Minn.
No. 31 Minnesota 7, No. 47 Indiana 0
1. Natallia Pintusava (MINN) def. No. 65 Leslie Hureau (IND) 6-1, 4-6, 6-4
2. No. 124 Alexa Palen (MINN) def. Evgeniya Vertesheva (IND) 6-2, 6-4
3. Doron Muravnik (MINN) def. Katie Klyczek (IND) 6-2, 6-2
4. Tereza Brichacova (MINN) def. Alecia Kauss (IND) 6-3, 6-3
5. Aria Lambert (MINN) def. Shannon Murdy (IND) 6-0, 7-6 (2)
6. Yuliana Umanets (MINN) def. Kayla Fujimoto (IND) 6-4, 6-4
1. No. 45 Natallia Pintusava/Magdalena Wiecha (MINN) def. Sophie Garre/Kate Klyczek (IND) 8-4
2. Alexa Palen/Doron Muravnik (MINN) def. Evgeniya Vertesheva/Kayla Fujimoto (IND) 9-7
3. Leslie Hureau/Shannon Murdy (IND) def. Julia Courter/Aria Lambert (MINN) 8-6
No. 31 Minnesota 14-5 (4-4 Big Ten)
No. 47 Indiana 15-7 (4-4 Big Ten)
Order of finish: Doubles (1,3,2); Singles (3,6,4,5,2,1)
First Serve With Cammy Frei
Cammy Frei comes to Minnesota from New Tier High School in Winnetka, Ill. The three-time all-state honoree and state scholar plans to earn a degree in engineering while at Minnesota.
First Serve With Kalyssa Hall
Kalyssa Hall comes to the Gophers after winning two 4A state championships at Cherry Creek High School.
River Hart Signs With Minnesota
University of Minnesota head coach Chuck Merzbacher announced the signing of River Hart Tuesday.