May 9, 2009
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The fifth-ranked Irish women’s tennis team punched their ticket to the NCAA round of 16 in College Station, Texas Saturday with a 4-1 win over No. 17 Michigan.
Notre Dame improved to 26-4 on the season and 12-2 in NCAA action at home. The Irish will make their eighth trip to the NCAA round of 16.
The Irish clinched a 1-0 lead after battling to take the doubles point. Second-ranked Kelcy Tefft and Kristy Frilling downed Tania Mahtani and Chisako Sugiyama, 8-2, at No. 1 doubles. Tefft and Frilling went up 3-0 before relinquishing a point, then won the final four games to take the match.
Shannon Mathews and Colleen Rielley clinched the point for the Irish with an 8-5 comeback win over Lindsey Howard and Denise Muresan, at No. 3 doubles. Mathews and Rielley were down 0-3 to begin the match, before rallying to take five of the next six games. After tying the match at 4-4, the Irish never gave up the lead.
Frilling put the Irish up 2-0 with a 6-2, 6-1 win over Tatsuno at No. 2 singles. Frilling was down 0-1 in the second set, before taking six straight to win the match.
Mathews topped Taney, 6-0, 6-4, at fourth singles to give the Irish a 3-0 lead. After dominating the first set, Mathews battled from a 1-2, then a 2-3 deficit for the win. After tying the set at 3-3, Mathews won three of the next four games to earn the victory.
Michelle Sulahian gave the Wolverines their only point of the day with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Kristen Rafael at No. 6 singles.
With the Irish down at No. 3 singles and even at No. 5, Tefft stepped up to clinch the win for Notre Dame with a 6-1, 6-4 victory over Sugiyama at first singles. After easing through the first set, Tefft and Sugiyama battled back-and-forth through the second set, before Tefft won the final two games for the victory.
Michigan’s Muresan was leading Ciobanu 7-6 (9-7), 2-2 at third singles, while Krisik and Mahtani were even at 1-6, 6-3, at No. 5 singles when the match was called.
The Irish will travel to College Station, Texas next weekend to take on 12th-ranked Clemson in the round of 16.
#5 Notre Dame 4, #17 Michigan 1
Singles competition 1. Kelcy Tefft (ND) def. Chisako Sugiyama (UM) 6-1, 6-4 2. Kristy Frilling (ND) def. Rika Tatsuno (UM) 6-2, 6-1 3. Cosmina Ciobanu (ND) vs. Denise Muresan (UM) 6-7 (7-9), 2-2, unfinished 4. Shannon Mathews (ND) def. Whitney Taney (UM) 6-0, 6-4 5. Kali Krisik (ND) vs. Tania Mahtani (UM) 1-6, 6-3, unfinished 6. Michelle Sulahian (UM) def. Kristen Rafael (ND) 6-3, 6-3
Doubles competition 1. Kelcy Tefft/Kristy Frilling (ND) def. Chisako Sugiyama/Tania Mahtani (UM) 8-2 2. Cosmina Ciobanu/Kali Krisik (ND) vs. Whitney Taney/Rika Tatsuno (UM) 7-4, unfinished 3. Shannon Mathews/Colleen Rielley (ND) def. Lindsey Howard/Denise Muresan (UM) 8-5
Match Notes Michigan 18-7; National ranking #17 Notre Dame 26-4; National ranking #5 Order of finish: Doubles (1,3); Singles (2,4,6,1) NCAA Second Round