March 25, 2005
OXFORD, Miss. - Another dramatic singles win for sophomore Victoria Jones (Tyne & Wear, U.K. / South Tyneside College) earned No. 19 Tennessee its fourth Southeastern Conference win against one loss and kept the Lady Vols in a tie for third in the overall SEC standings, one game out of first. In the overall SEC standings, Kentucky and Georgia are tied for the top spot with 5-0 marks, while rivals Tennessee and Vanderbilt are in a stalemate for third at 4-1. The loss at home for Ole Miss was only its second in 10 contests this season.
In the final match to be completed of UT's (11-4, 4-1 SEC) 4-3 win over 46th-ranked Ole Miss (9-5, 2-3 SEC), Jones earned a dramatic comeback 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 victory, her 12th win in 14 contests. Earlier this season, the sophomore had won in three sets in the final match to be completed of UT's 4-3 win at Illinois.
Doubles play saw three close results as all three contests were decided by two games as UT claimed two-of-three to earn the doubles point.
At No. 1, freshman Bryce Marable (Darien. Ill. / Hinsdale South H.S.) and junior Sabita Maharaj (Gainesville, Fla. / Buchholz H.S.) won a tight 9-7 decision with No. 24 Chloe Carlotti and Virginia Tomatis, the second win in three days for the Lady Vol pair over a ranked duo. The two had topped Texas' 18th-ranked pair of Katie Ruckert and Kendra Strohm, 8-6, on Wednesday.
Coming into the week, the Lady Vols as a team had recorded only one win in 2004-05 over a nationally-ranked opponent as Maharaj and senior Ashley Robards (Henderson, Ky. / Henderson County H.S.) topped No. 48 Karin Coetzee and Ashlee Davis, 8-4, on Sept. 19, 2004.
The Ole Miss duo of Nika Koukhartchouk and Preethi Subramanian topped UT's pair of Robards and freshman Daron Moore (North Hollywood, Calif. / Campbell Hall School) by an 8-6 count at the third court. The Big Orange then clinched the doubles matches when the No. 2 pair of freshman Ghizela Schutte (Ninapark, South Africa / Damelin College) and junior Melissa Schaub (Lexington, Ohio / Lexington H.S.) defeated Ilona Somers and Mimi Renaudin, 8-6.
"We played well in doubles and beat some good teams," Co-Head Coach Mike Patrick said.
At No. 1 singles, No. 57 Carlotti topped 42nd-ranked Marahaj in straight sets, 6-2, 6-1, to tie the overall contest, 1-1. Robards then gave Tennessee the lead back, 2-1, with a 7-5, 6-3 victory at No. 5 over Renaudin. The senior's record this season improved to 7-2 with the win.
Ole Miss came right back for a 2-2 tie when No. 82 Koukhartchouk won in the No. 3 match over Marable, 6-3, 6-4. In a dramatic contest on the sixth court, Subramanian earned a 6-4, 7-6 (8-6) win over Schutte, ending the South African's winning streak at five, and the Lady Rebels had their first lead at 3-2.
Griffith would give UT its tying point with a 6-4, 0-6, 6-2 win at No. 2 over Somers. The win was only the second of the sophomore's career in which she rebounded from losing a set, 6-0, for a match victory. On Jan. 14 at the Freeman Memorial Tennis Championships, Griffith topped Southern Cal's Judy DeVera, 0-6, 6-2, 7-6.
That set the stage for the dramatic victory for Jones.
"It was a hard-fought win," Co-Head Coach Mike Patrick said. "I'm proud of the girls and their efforts."
The Lady Vols have won 11-of-13 matches and remain in the Magnolia State, taking on No. 34 Mississippi State at 1 p.m. CST on Sunday.
|#19 Tennessee 4, #46 Ole Miss 3|
|Singles (Order of finish: 1, 5, 3, 6, 2, 4*)|
|1. #57 Chloe Carlotti (Ole Miss) def. #42 Sabita Maharaj (Tenn.)||6-2, 6-1|
|2. Blakeley Griffith (Tenn.) def. Ilona Somers (Ole Miss)||6-4, 0-6, 6-2|
|3. #82 Nika Koukhartchouk (Ole Miss) def. Bryce Marable (Tenn.)||6-3, 6-4|
|4. Victoria Jones (Tenn.) def. Virginia Tomatis (Ole Miss)||3-6, 6-3, 6-3|
|5. Ashley Robards (Tenn.) def. Mimi Renaudin (Ole Miss)||7-5, 6-3|
|6. Preethi Subramanian (Ole Miss) def. Ghizela Schutte (Tenn.)||6-4, 7-6 (8-6)|
|Doubles (Order of finish: 1, 3, 2*)|
|1. Maharaj/Marable (Tenn.) def. #24 Carlotti/Tomatis (Ole Miss)||9-7|
|2. Schaub/Schutte (Tenn.) def. Renaudin/Somers (Ole Miss)||8-6|
|3. Koukhartchouk/Subramanian (Ole Miss) def. Moore/Robards (Tenn.)||8-6|