College MatchDay experiences a
TOP 15 SHOWDOWN
Brian Ormiston | February 3, 2017
Fans were treated to some remarkable tennis when No. 2 North Carolina toppled No. 12 Texas Tech, 4-0, in a Top 15 women’s matchup Friday at the USTA National Campus. A total of 658 fans took part in the action for the second College MatchDay event of the season.
The victory allowed the Tar Heels to stay undefeated, moving to 5-0 in 2017. The Lady Raiders suffered their first loss, falling to 2-1.
“What a great atmosphere. [The USTA staff] made it such a first-class event for us,” UNC head coach Brian Kalbas said. “I thought the level of play was amazing. [Texas Tech] is one of the most competitive teams in the country. I knew that they wouldn’t go away, and they would fight and compete to the end. I was really proud of our team for making those pushes in the second sets. We found a second gear and got over the finish line.
“Our team was really nervous because this was probably more fans than they had ever played in front of before. The atmosphere resembled an NCAA Championship finals, so to be in this kind of environment this early in the season is going to bode well for us in the future.”
Plenty of music, giveaways and games were on hand before the match, and local families learned valuable lessons from the USTA teaching pros during the kids’ clinic. That served as a perfect opening act for a heart-pounding edition of doubles.
The Tar Heels and Lady Raiders split matches on courts one and three, respectively. The doubles point came down to court two where the Texas Tech duo of Sarah Dvorak and Sabrina Federici fell behind 5-2 to UNC’s Jessie Aney and Cassandra Vazquez. Eventually at 5-4, the Tar Heels were able to serve it out to grab a 1-0 overall team lead.
Singles play featured the Tar Heels in some tight matches, but a UNC team that features five players ranked in the Top 45 proved too strong for the Lady Raiders. North Carolina’s Hayley Carter (No. 5) survived a comeback bid by Gabriela Talaba on court one, earning a 6-1, 7-5 triumph to stake her team to a 2-0 lead. UNC went up 3-0 with a win by Alexa Graham (No. 44) over Alex Valenstein on court four, and then sealed the evening when Sara Daavettila (No. 3) topped Felicity Maltby on court two.
The top talents coming to the USTA National Campus for College MatchDay continues on Friday, Feb. 17, at 6 p.m. In a rematch of the 2016 NCAA Women’s Final, No. 4 Stanford goes up against No. 5 Oklahoma State as the Cowgirls look to avenge a 4-3 loss last year.
RSVP for free admission to all College MatchDay events by visiting CollegeMatchDay2017.com.
No. 2 North Carolina 4, No. 12 Texas Tech 0
No. 1 Hayley Carter / Sara Daavettila (UNC) def. Lynn Kiro / Alex Valenstein (TTU) 6-2
No. 2 Jessie Aney / Cassandra Vazquez (UNC) def. #14 Sarah Dvorak / Sabrina Federici (TTU) 6-4
No. 3 Felicity Maltby / Gabriela Talaba (TTU) def. Chloe Ouellet-Pizer / Rachael James-Baker (UNC) 6-4
No. 1 #5 Hayley Carter (UNC) def. #26 Gabriela Talaba (TTU) 6-1, 7-5
No. 2 #3 Sara Daavettila (UNC) def. #81 Felicity Maltby (TTU) 6-4, 7-5
No. 3 #9 Jessie Aney (UNC) vs. Sarah Dvorak (TTU) 6-4, 5-3, unfinished
No. 4 #44 Alexa Graham (UNC) def. Alex Valenstein (TTU) 6-3, 6-4
No. 5 Sabrina Federici (TTU) vs. #45 Makenna Jones (UNC) 7-5, 3-3, unfinished
No. 6 Rachael James-Baker (UNC) vs. Katelyn Jackson (TTU) 7-5, 3-3, unfinished
2017 College MatchDay Series at the USTA National Campus
Jan. 21 – Michigan 4, Alabama 0 (men)
Feb. 3 – North Carolina 4 vs. Texas Tech 0 (women)
Feb. 17 – Oklahoma State vs. Stanford (women) – 6 p.m.
March 8 – UCF vs. Penn State (men) – 6 p.m.
March 10 – Florida State vs. Florida (men) – 6 p.m.
March 14 – Ohio State vs. Florida (women) – 6 p.m.