KNOXVILLE -- The University of Tennessee Lady Vol tennis team battled from a 4-2 deficit after the singles matches to defeat Louisiana State, 5-4, on Sunday. The 19th-ranked Lady Vols swept all three doubles matches from the No. 37 Tigers at the Varsity Courts, moving to 12-7 overall and 3-1 in the Southeastern Conference. LSU drops to 10-6 overall and 2-5 in the SEC.
"It was a great comeback," said co-head coach Mike Patrick. "Alison (Ojeda) played incredibly well in doubles after losing a three-hour singles match. It shows a lot of heart and a lot of character, and the whole team really showed character today. We've always had battles with LSU, and it feels good to be on this end of things."
Sophomore Alison Ojeda and freshman Vilmarie Castellvi topped off the late Lady Vol charge with an 8-6 doubles victory. The duo came from behind to defeat the 16th-ranked LSU pair of Bruna Colosio and Ana Paula Mores in the No. 1 slot. Senior Candy Reid and sophomore Agnes Wiski notched an 8-3 doubles decision at No. 2, and freshman Crystal Cleveland and sophomore Meiling Parks rounded out the sweep with an 8-2 win at No. 3.
Reid and Cleveland also scored points in singles action, helping UT reverse the 5-4 loss it suffered at LSU last year. Reid defeated the Tigers' Lauren Haddix, 6-2, 6-3, at No. 5 singles, and Cleveland blanked Mandy Rice, 6-0, 6-0, in the No. 6 position. However, LSU took the top three singles slots. Ojeda fell, 6-3, 4-6, 6-7 (6-8), to #13 Colosio at No. 1 after pushing the match to a tie-breaker and three hours. Wiski played in the No. 2 slot for the first time this season, but fell to #65 Mores, 0-6, 2-6, and Castellvi dropped a narrow, 6-7, 5-7, decision at No. 3 singles.
The Lady Vols continue SEC action, as they will for the remainder of the regular season, when they travel to Nashville to face Vanderbilt on Wednesday, March 29. The match will begin at 2:30 p.m. CT. Next weekend, the team is in Knoxville again for its final two home matches this season: Saturday, April 1 vs. Kentucky at noon, and Sunday, April 2 vs. Florida at noon.
#19 TENNESSEE 5, #37 LOUISIANA STATE 4
Singles: No. 1 #13 Bruna Colosio (LSU) def. #51 Alison Ojeda (UT), 6-3, 4-6, 6-7 (6-8) No. 2 #65 Ana Paula Mores (LSU) def. Agnes Wiski (UT), 0-6, 2-6 No. 3 Tami Botts (LSU) def. Vilmarie Castellvi (UT), 6-7, 5-7 No. 4 Fernanda Tsucamato (LSU) def. Meiling Parks (UT), 4-6, 3-6 No. 5 Candy Reid (UT) def. Lauran Haddix (LSU), 6-2, 6-3 No. 6 Crystal Cleveland (UT) def. Mandy Rice (LSU), 6-0, 6-0
Doubles: No. 1 Ojeda/Castellvi (UT) def. #16 Colosio/Mores (LSU), 8-6 No. 2 Reid/Wiski (UT) def. Tsucamato/Amy McIlhaney (LSU), 8-3 No. 3 Cleveland/Parks (UT) def. Haddix/Botts (LSU), 8-2