Senior Caitlin Whoriskey
March 7, 2010
By: Lindsey Williford, Media Relations Graduate Assistant
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - Once again, the University of Tennessee women's tennis team (8-4, 2-0 SEC) dominated its opponent despite a shorthanded lineup of just five active players. Playing outdoors for the first time in the 2010 season, the 11th-ranked Lady Vols cruised past No. 50 Alabama, 5-2.
"Everyone on our team was fired up to play Alabama today after we beat Auburn on Friday," Co-Head Coach Mike Patrick said. "Our squad has adjusted well to the unfortunate circumstances but they've continued to develop their strengths in practice and their needs, as well. Those that haven't been playing have still been beside them learning from and encouraging their teammates."
Developing their strengths, they have; as the Lady Vols showed today in their 45 minute rout over the Tide in doubles. The fact Alabama had an advantage after UT forfeited the third roster spot was quickly erased by senior Caitlin Whoriskey and junior partner Maria Sorbello. The pair took out the No. 47 team of Courtney McLane and Alexa Guarachi 8-2 at the top position, while UT's 33rd-rated combo of junior Rosalía Alda and senior Zsófia Zubor defeated Paulina Bigos and Alice Tunaru 8-0 to give Tennessee the early lead.
With today's victory, Alda and Zubor were the first Lady Vol pair to reach the 20-win milestone in doubles this season. Together, the two have also notched a team-high nine victories in dual-play; two of which have come over nationally-ranked opponents.
"Rosa and Zsófia work very well together and have shown they deserve the high ranking and all 20 wins," Patrick said. "If they continue this way, I wouldn't be surprised to see them in go far in postseason play."
As with doubles, the Orange and White were forced to forfeit the last the spot in the singles lineup, giving the Crimson Tide its first of two total points for the day. It once more, however, didn't seem to faze Tennessee as the squad snagged two quick victories to take a 3-1 advantage. Alda was the first to finish, claiming an easy 6-0, 6-0 decision over Meritt Emery at the No. 3 slot to increase her current team-best winning streak to three. Shortly thereafter, Whoriskey walked off court one with a triumph over McLane, 6-1, 6-0.
Zubor ensured that her team would remain perfect in Southeastern Conference play with a straight-set defeat of her own. The Hungary native easily captured the first set 6-1, but Alabama's Bigos fought back in the second stanza, tying the set at 5-5. Ultimately, however, Zubor would come away with game six and seven to take the set 7-5, and the second SEC competition for UT.
The Tide would get point number two after No. 78 Guarachi upset 47th-ranked Sorbello in a tight contest, 6-2, 7-5, on the second court.
Sophomore Katie Lee gave the Big Orange the last available point after winning a marathon match over Antonia Foehse, 6-7 (10-4), 6-3, 1-0 (10-5).
The Lady Vol tennis team will next be in action when they travel to face in-state rival No. 19 Vanderbilt and 69th-ranked Kentucky next weekend. Tennessee will face the Commodores at 3:30 p.m. ET on March 12 and the Wildcats at 3 p.m. ET on March 14.
No. 11 Tennessee 5, No. 50 Alabama 2
1: No. 10 Caitlin Whoriskey (UT) def. Courtney McLane (UA) - 6-1, 6-0
2: No. 78 Alexa Guarachi (UA) def. No. 47 Maria Sorbello (UT) - 6-2, 7-5
3: Rosalía Alda (UT) def. Meritt Emery (UA) - 6-0, 6-0
4: Zsófia Zubor (UT) def. Paulina Bigos (UA) - 6-1, 7-5
5: Katie Lee (UT) def. Antonia Foehse (UA) - 6-7 (10-4), 6-3, 1-0 (10-5)
6: Alice Turner (UA) - Won by Forfeit
Order of finish: (6, 3, 1, 4*, 2, 5)
1: Caitlin Whoriskey/Maria Sorbello (UT) def. No. 47 Courtney McLane/Alexa Guarachi - 8-3
2: No. 33 Rosalía Alda/Zsófia Zubor (UT) def. Paulina Bigos/Alice Tunaru - 8-0
3: Meritt Emery/Antonia Foehse (UA) - Won by Forfeit
Order of finish: (3, 1, 2)
* Clinching point