Jan. 28, 2012
ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Hitting the road for the first time on the 2012 season, the 21st-ranked University of Notre Dame women’s tennis team dropped a tough 4-3 decision to 35th-ranked Yale on Saturday at the Varsity Tennis Center in the opening round of the ITA Kickoff Weekend.
Yale captured an early 2-0 advantage in the match, claiming both the doubles point and the first singles point to be completed. After Notre Dame’s fifth-ranked pairing of Kristy Frilling (Sidney, Ohio) and Shannon Mathews (Birmingham, Mich.) took the first doubles match against 16th-ranked Vicky Brook and Hanna Yu at No. 1 doubles, 8-5, the Bulldogs evened the count with a decision at No. 3 doubles that saw Blair Seideman and Steph Kent fend off Chrissie McGaffigan (Davenport, Iowa) and Jennifer Kellner (Smithtown, N.Y.), 8-4.
With one doubles match left on court the Irish seemed to be in control, as the 25th-ranked pairing of Britney Sanders (Ontario, Calif.) and Katherine White (Columbus, Ga.) held a 7-5 lead on Yale’s Annie Sullivan and Elizabeth Epstein at No. 2 doubles with the serve. The Irish, however, could not close out the contest, dropping serve and proceeding to fall in each of the next three games to drop a 9-7 decision. Yu then made short work of McGaffigan at No. 5 singles to push the lead to 2-0, winning in straight sets over the Irish junior, 6-1, 6-3.
Mathews looked to get Notre Dame back in the match at No. 2 singles, claiming the first point on the day for the Irish with a straight sets win of her own over Seideman, 6-0, 6-4. Yale, however, took back the two point advantage after Epstein held on to defeat Frilling 6-2, 7-5 at No. 1 singles to push the Bulldogs to match point.
Kellner again climbed the Irish to within one point of Yale, defeating Brook at No. 3 singles, 6-4, 6-2, but the Irish once more could not get the match back to level as Kent closed out White at No. 6 singles, 7-2, 7-6 (7-3) to clinch the victory for the Bulldogs at 4-2. The Irish claimed the final point of the match as Sanders, who dropped the opening set of her contest 6-4, battled back against Sullivan at No. 4 singles to win each of the final two sets, 6-2, 6-0.
With the loss, the Irish now face Maryland (1-1) in a consolation matchup after the Terrapins fell to host Michigan, 5-2. Notre Dame and Maryland are set to matchup Sunday at 10:00 a.m. (ET). Be sure to check back with UND.com for a complete recap of the matchup and to listen to live play-by-play of match action visit RadioTennis.com.
#35 Yale 4, #21 Notre Dame 3January 28, 2012Varsity Tennis Center
Singles:1. Elizabeth Epstein (Yale) def. Kristy Frilling (ND), 6-2, 7-52. Shannon Mathews (ND) def. Blair Seideman (Yale), 6-0, 6-43. Jennifer Kellner (ND) def. Vicky Brook (Yale), 6-4, 6-24. Britney Sanders (ND) def. Annie Sullivan (Yale), 4-6, 6-2, 6-05. Hanna Yu (Yale) def. Chrissie McGaffigan (ND), 6-1, 6-36. Steph Kent (Yale) def. Katherine White (ND), 7-2, 7-6 (3)
Doubles:1. #5 Kristy Filling/Shannon Mathews (ND) def. #16 Vicky Brook/Hanna Yu (Yale), 8-52. Annie Sullivan/Elizabeth Epstein (Yale) def. #25 Britney Sanders/Katherine White (ND), 9-73. Blair Seideman/Steph Kent (Yale) def. Chrissie McGaffigan/Jennifer Kellner (ND), 8-4
Match Notes:Yale 1-0; National ranking #35Notre Dame 3-1; National ranking #21Order of Completion: Doubles (1, 3, 2); Singles (5, 2, 1, 3, 6, 4)