No. 1 Seed Tulsa Defeats UCF Women's Tennis, 4-1, in C-USA Quarterfinals


April 20, 2007

Final Stats

Tulsa, Okla. (www.ucfathletics.com) - An exciting 2007 season wrapped up for the UCF women's tennis team Friday in Tulsa, Okla., where No. 1 seed Tulsa defeated the No. 8 Knights, 4-1, in the quarterfinals of the Conference USA Championship. With an 11-8 final record for the Black and Gold, 2007 marked the 16th-straight season it collected double-digit victories.

UCF defeated No. 9 East Carolina in the tournament's first round Thursday by a score of 4-0 to advance and play the host school. Tulsa (19-4), which entered the week ranked No. 44 in the nation, grabbed Friday's first overall point by locking up two victories in doubles play. At No. 2, Santie Delport and Marta Marcinkowska got past Kenza Belbacha and Kyla McNicol, 8-4, while Thalia Diaz-Barriga and Jie Zeng topped Jennifer Carati and Becky Gordon at No. 3, 8-3.

The Knights had the lead at the No. 1 doubles position as Elvira Serrot and Anna Yakimchenkova were ahead of Kindsay Grimes and Carla Zabaleta but did not finish since Tulsa had already claimed the doubles team point.

Singles action proved to be extremely close and the matches at Nos. 1, 2, 4 and 6 were up for grabs. Tulsa did manage to jump out to a 2-0 advantage when Agostina Santoro defeated Megan Hunter, 6-1, 6-0. But the Knights bounced back by earning a point thanks to Yakimchenkova cruising past Zabaleta at No. 3, 6-2, 6-2. The win was the junior's seventh-straight and her team-high 18th of the season.

Three sets were needed in determining the next team point and it came at No. 4. McNicol, who brought in an 11-2 dual-match singles record, was able to take the second set after dropping the first to Diaz-Barriga. However, the Tulsa sophomore rebounded to hand the Golden Hurricane their third point with a 6-2, 4-6, 6-0 triumph. A second-set tiebreaker would let Tulsa advance to the semifinals as Delport found a way to edge Belbacha at No. 2, 6-1, 7-6(3).

In the two unfinished singles contests, Serrot had a 6-4, 4-4 lead over Grimes at No. 1, and Gordon was ahead of Marcinkowska at No. 6, 7-6(4), 2-3.

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