Feb. 16, 2002
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The 18th-ranked University of Notre Dame women’s tennis team dropped a 6-1 decision to #8 Tennessee Saturday morning in the Eck Tennis Pavilion. The Lady Vols won the doubles point and five of six singles matches to improve to 6-3. Sophomore Alicia Salas (Engelwood, Colo.) provided the lone Irish point with a 6-4, 7-5 upset victory over 77th-ranked Agnes Wiski — the highest-ranked player she has defeated in her career. Notre Dame (4-5) will return to action Monday, playing host to #51 Brigham Young at 4:00 p.m.
Tennessee won the doubles point with a win in the final match on-court. The Lady Vols captured the first match finished — an 8-5 win for the 12th-ranked team of Crystal Cleveland and Alison Ojeda at No. 2. Seconds later, Salas and freshman Sarah Jane Connelly (Oklahoma City, Okla.) gained an 8-3 win at No. 3 for the Irish. In the deciding match, Vilmarie Castellvi and Agnes Wiski, ranked 45th, won 8-4 at No. 1.
In singles action, the Lady Volunteers won the first four matches completed to secure the victory. Castellvi, ranked 20th in singles, finished first, registering a 6-3, 6-1 triumph at No. 2. Sixteenth-ranked Ojeda gave Tennessee a 3-0 lead with a 6-1, 6-3 victory at No.1 before 66th-ranked Kim Gates clinched the Lady Vol victory with a 6-2, 6-4 win at No. 3. Cleveland then registered a 6-3, 7-5 win at No. 6 before Salas got the Irish on the board and improved to 9-0 in singles this spring. Majen Immink ended the match with a 4-6, 6-3, 1-0 (10-3) win at No. 5.
Salas has won 12 straight singles matches, as well as 15 of her last 16 and holds an 11-0 mark in career dual singles action. Salas has been particularly dominant at home, posting a combined 16-1 record (9-0 singles, 7-1 doubles) in the Eck Tennis Pavilion this season. She lost her first career singles match at home as a freshman, but has since won all 14 matches in the Eck Tennis Pavilion or Courtney Tennis Center.
Notre Dame has lost its last three matches at home, marking the first time that has happened since 1992.
#8 Tennessee 6, #18 Notre Dame 1
No. 1: #16 Alison Ojeda (T) d. #58 Becky Varnum (ND) 6-1, 6-3
No. 2: #20 Vilmarie Castellvi (T) d. Nina Vaughan (ND) 6-3, 6-1
No. 3: #66 Kim Gates (T) d. Lindsey Green (ND) 6-2, 6-4
No. 4: Alicia Salas (ND) d. #77 Agnes Wiski (T) 6-4, 7-5
No. 5: Majen Immink (T) d. Katie Cunha (ND) 4-6, 6-3, 1-0 (10-3)
No. 6: Crystal Cleveland (T) d. Sarah Jane Connelly (ND) 6-3, 7-5
No. 1: #45 Castellvi/Wiski (T) d. #29 Green/Varnum (ND) 8-4
No. 2: #12 Cleveland/Ojeda (T) d. Cunha/Vaughan (ND) 8-5
No. 3: Connelly/Salas (ND) d. Immink/Kray (T) 8-3