Hawkeyes Knock Off No. 42 Illinois, 4-3

April 12, 2014

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — The University of Iowa women’s tennis team picked up their ninth win of the season on Saturday afternoon with a victory over No. 42 Illinois at the Atkins Tennis Center, 4-3.

“The team did a great job battling today,” said UI head coach Katie Dougherty. “We were finally able to break through and win a 4-3 match.”

The Hawkeyes got on the board first after winning the doubles point with victories at the No. 1 and No. 2 positions, giving them the early 1-0 advantage.

With a victory at No. 1 doubles, the tandem of senior Ruth Seaborne and junior Morven McCulloch (14-2) remain undefeated in conference play (7-0) and extend their win streak to ten matches.

Juniors Katie Zordani and Shelby Talcott clinched the doubles point for Iowa with an 8-5 victory over Illinois’ Misia Kedzierski and Allison Falkin at the No. 2 slot. Today marks the first time the duo teamed up together this season.

“The doubles point proved to be huge for us,” said Dougherty.

Iowa extended its lead to 3-0 with a pair of straight-set victories in singles.

Seaborne defeated Illinois’ Allison Falkin, 6-2, 6-2, to put the Hawkeyes up 2-0. Seaborne (13-5, 6-2) pushed her win streak to four matches and is now 8-1 in contests away from Iowa City.

McCulloch (10-9) added to Iowa’s lead with a straight-set victory at No. 3 singles, 6-4, 6-0. McCulloch remains undefeated (3-0) when competing at the No. 3 slot.

Down 3-0, Illinois posted three-straight singles victories to even the score at 3-3, leaving the match in sophomore Annette Dohanics hands.

After taking the first set over Illinois’ Jerricka Boone, 6-1, Dohanics dropped the second set, 4-6, forcing a tiebreaker set. Dohanics was able to come out on top, 6-4, to clinch the 4-3 victory for the Hawkeyes. Dohanics improved to 10-7 on the season.

“Annette did a great job clinching the win for us by coming back from 1-3 in the third set,” said Dougherty.

“We got off to a great start by winning the doubles point and led the match 3-0,” said Dohanics. “Illinois played tough and was able to tie us at 3-3. It came down to my match, and thanks to the support of my teammates we were able to get the win.”

Iowa is back in action on Sunday with a matchup at No. 12 Northwestern (12-6, 6-1) at 12 p.m. (CT).

“I’m proud of the way everyone battled today,” said Dougherty. “We have a very tough Northwestern team tomorrow and need to regroup and be ready to battle again tomorrow.”

Iowa 4, No. 42 Illinois 3

1. Ruth Seaborne (IOWA) def. Allison Falkin (ILL) 6-2, 6-2
2. Alexis Casati (ILL) def. Shelby Talcott (IOWA) 6-3, 2-6, 6-4
3. Morven McCulloch (IOWA) def. Melissa Kopinski (ILL) 6-4, 6-0
4. Louise Kwong (ILL) def. Katie Zordani (IOWA) 6-4, 6-4
5. Annette Dohanics (IOWA) def. Jerricka Boone (ILL) 6-1, 4-6, 6-4
6. Misia Kedzierski (ILL) def. Ellen Silver (IOWA) 6-0, 6-1

1. Ruth Seaborne/Morven McCulloch (IOWA) def. Melissa Kopinski/Alexis Casati (ILL) 8-2
2. Katie Zordani/Shelby Talcott (IOWA) def. Misia Kedzierski/Allison Falkin (ILL) 8-4
3. Louise Kwong/Jerricka Boone (ILL) vs. Ellen Silver/Annette Dohanics (IOWA) 7-4 (Abd.)

Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (1,3,6,4,2,5)