TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – For the first time since 2000, the Ole Miss women’s tennis team is headed to the ITA National Team Indoor finals as the Rebels defeated No. 18 Florida State 4-3 on their home courts Sunday to advance.
For the second straight day, the outcome came down to the last match on court six with Rebel sophomore Vivian Vlaar facing FSU’s Amy Sargeant. The two split sets with Vlaar dropping the first set 7-5 and then rallying to win the second set 7-5 after trailing 5-3. Vlaar rolled out to a 3-0 lead in the third set and cruised 6-0 to clinch.
“We are very proud of the girls for winning both matches this weekend and advancing to the National Team Indoor finals,” head coach Mark Beyers said. “We earned two really good wins. It came down to the wire again today.”
As they did against Texas A&M, the Rebels won the doubles point and that once again proved to be the difference. The senior duo of Kristi Boxx and Abby Guthrie, ranked No. 4 in the nation, won easily 8-2 at No. 1 doubles. Florida State took the No. 2 match 8-5, and then Caroline Rohde-Moe and Julia Jones finished off an 8-4 win at No.3 to clinch the point.
Ole Miss went up 2-0 as Boxx, ranked No. 12 in the nation, downed Francesca Segarelli 6-2, 6-2 at No. 1 singles.
Florida State evened the match with wins on courts four and five. Noemie Scharle defeated freshman Erin Stephens 6-1, 6-4 at No. 4 and Carolina De Los Santos beat freshman Julia Jones 6-2, 6-2 at No. 5.
Sophomore Caroline Rohde-Moe won for the second straight day, topping FSU’s Ruth Seaborne 6-4, 6-3 at No. 2 singles to put the Rebels back ahead 3-2. Rohde-Moe, ranked No. 54 in the nation, improved to 14-3 on the year.
The Seminoles evened up the match when Leyla Erkan defeated Guthrie 6-4, 4-6, 6-2 at No. 3 singles setting up the final outcome on court six.
“We did a great job in the doubles again and Kristi gave us a quick 2-0 lead. Then Florida State responded with back-to-back wins. Caroline played extremely well this weekend, and Vivian did it again. We had to have both of their matches both days and they stepped up.
"Hopefully we can carry this momentum into the rest of the season. It is exciting to have qualified for the ITA National Indoor final 16. We'll have an opportunity to measure ourselves against the very best teams in the country," Beyers said.
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