Feb. 20, 2015
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -The 26th-ranked University of Notre Dame women’s tennis team snatched its first Atlantic Coast Conference win of the season Friday with a 4-3 win over No. 74 Louisville in a hostile environment at the Bass Rudd Tennis Center.
“We thought we did a good job of battling the crowd, and they were vocal,” head coach Jay Louderback said. “(The Louisville fans were) also pretty much on top of the court, so it’s another good place to play and I thought (our players) did a good job of shutting that out.”
The Irish (5-3, 1-0 ACC) won the doubles point, snagging wins on Courts 1 and 3 after an 8-6 loss at No. 2. Mary Closs and Jane Fennelly cruised to an 8-4 win over Jessie Lynn Paul and Manuela Velasquez, while No. 14 tandem Quinn Gleason and Monica Robinson pulled away for an 8-6 win over Elle Stokes and Ariana Rodriguez after being tied a six games apiece.
The Irish lost their lineup leader in Gleason, however, as the match moved into the singles competition. The junior suffered a sprained ankle last weekend and was not able to continue after doubles play. Louderback described Gleason’s status as day-to-day.
Louderback was impressed with how his team responded to the lineup shift.
“I thought everyone did a great job stepping up one spot,” Louderback said. “The three matches we lost we did a good job coming back from down early in the first set and I felt like we did a good job of hanging in there. Then Monica, Mary and Allie all won in straight sets, which took the pressure off.”
Freshman Allison Miller and Closs gave the Irish two quick points to begin singles play, with Miller defeating Velasquez, 6-1, 6-4, and Closs defeating Rodriguez, 6-2, 6-1, on Courts 4 and 3, respectively. The Cardinals (9-4, 1-1 ACC) pulled within a point with wins at Nos. 2 and 6, but Robinson sealed the victory for the Irish with a 7-5, 6-4 win over Stokes in her first career game at No. 1 singles.
In the dual’s final match, Fennelly forced a third-set tiebreaker after knotting her match with Olivia Boesing at a set apiece, but ultimately fell, 6-4, 6-7(3), 10-8.
Notre Dame returns to action at 11 a.m. ET Sunday at Pittsburgh (2-4, 0-1 ACC) inside the Alpha Fitness and Tennis Center. For the latest on all Irish women’s tennis action, follow@NDWomensTennis on Twitter and like Notre Dame Women’s Tennis on Facebook.
No. 26 Notre Dame 4, No. 74 Louisville 3
1. Monica Robinson (ND) def. Elle Stokes (UL), 7-5, 6-4
2. Jessie Lynn Paul (UL) def. Julie Vrabel (ND), 6-0, 7-6(5)
3. Mary Closs (ND) def. Ariana Rodriguez (UL), 6-2, 6-1
4. Allison Miller (ND) def. Manuela Velasquez (UL), 6-1, 6-4
5. Olivia Boesing (UL) def. Jane Fennelly (ND), 6-4, 6-7(3), 10-8
6. Chloe Willetts (UL) def. Molly O’Koniewski (ND), 6-4. 6-4
1. No. 14 Quinn Gleason / Monica Robinson (ND) def. Elle Stokes / Ariana Rodriguez (UL), 8-6
2. Chloe Willetts / Olivia Boesing (UL) def. Allison Miller / Julie Vrabel (ND), 8-6
3. Mary Closs / Jane Fennelly (ND) def. Jessie Lynn Paul / Manuela Valesquez (UL), 8-4
Joanne Norell, Media Relations Assistant