April 22, 2006

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GAINSESVILLE, Fla. ­- The 31st-ranked and fifth-seeded University of Tennessee Lady Vol tennis team (12-12) battled No. 4 and top-seeded Florida (20-1) in the Southeastern Conference semifinals on Saturday morning before dropping a 4-0 decision to the Gators. The advancement into the semifinals was the first to that stage of the tourney since 2003.

The first doubles contest to finish came at court three, where the Tennessee freshman duo of Samantha Orlin (Miami, Fla.) and Hayley Prendergast (Higham, Mass.) fell to Keri Robison and Nina Suvak, 8-0.

The Gators claimed the doubles point when UT's No. 2 pair of juniors Blakeley Griffith (Middleburg, Va.) and Victoria Jones (Tyne & Wear, U.K.) dropped an 8-2 decision to Lolita Frangulyan and Diana Srebrovic. The Gator tandem put together a pair of 3-0 runs to start and finish the contest.

On the first court, the 51st-ranked pair of senior Melissa Schaub (Lexington, Ohio) and sophomore Ghizela Schutte (Ninapark, South Africa) was trailing, 7-3, to No. 41 Whitney Benik and Alexis Gordon.

Florida upped its lead to 2-0 by virtue of a forfeit win at court six. The Gators grabbed another point when, on the second court, No. 5 Srebrovic topped Jones, 6-0, 6-0. The result was clinched when Blakeley fell to No. 124 Benik, 6-4, 6-1, at No. 3. Griffith battled back from 5-2 down in the first for a 5-4 deficit before losing the set's tightly-contested 10th game.

At court one, Schaub was trailing No. 14 Gordon, 6-3, 4-3. On the fourth court, Schutte lost the first set, 6-2, but was leading the second, 5-3, versus Suvak. At No. 5, Orlin was leading Robison, 7-6 (7-1), 2-3.

Next up for Tennessee is the NCAA Selection Show, which will air at 8:30 p.m. on May 3 on ESPNews. This year's NCAA Tournament takes place at various campus sites from May 12-14, while the NCAA Championships will occur in Stanford, Calif., from May 18-28.

#4 Florida 4, #31 Tennessee 0
Singles competition
1. #14 Alexis Gordon (UF) vs. Melissa Schaub (TN) 6-3, 4-3, unfinished
2. #5 Diana Srebrovic (UF) def. Victoria Jones (TN) 6-0, 6-0
3. #124 Whitney Benik (UF) def. Blakeley Griffith (TN) 6-4, 6-1
4. Nina Suvak (UF) vs. Ghizela Schutte (TN) 6-2, 3-5, unfinished
5. Keri Robison (UF) vs. Samantha Orlin (TN) 6-7 (1-7), 3-2, unfinished
6. Lolita Frangulyan (UF) def. No player (TN) by forfeit
Doubles competition
1. #41 Whitney Benik/Alexis Gordon (UF) vs. #51 Melissa Schaub/Ghizela Schutte (TN) 7-3, unfinished
2. Lolita Frangulyan/Diana Srebrovic (UF) def. Blakeley Griffith/Victoria Jones (TN) 8-2
3. Keri Robison/Nina Suvak (UF) def. Samantha Orlin/Hayley Prendergast (TN) 8-0
Match Notes
Tennessee 12-12; National ranking #31
Florida 20-1; National ranking #4
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2); Singles (,2,3)





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