March 10, 2018
No. 36 LSU at No. 11 South Carolina
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- No. 11 South Carolina women's tennis (12-3, 4-0 SEC) wrapped a successful first weekend of SEC home matches with a pair of wins, besting No. 36 LSU, 4-1, at the Carolina Tennis Center on Saturday.
South Carolina earned the doubles point for the seventh straight match, and Rachel Rohrabacher, Megan Davies and Paige Cline earned victories in their singles matches to defeat the Tigers. Mia Horvit surrendered the sole point to LSU, losing her singles match on Court 2 to Eden Richardson, 6-3, 6-2.
With the win, the Gamecocks improved to 8-0 at the Carolina Tennis Center and extended their winning streak to seven matches.
The Gamecocks captured the doubles point for the seventh straight match dating back to Feb. 24 against North Florida. Rachel Rohrabacher and Megan Davies continued their productivity for the Gamecocks, earning a quick 6-0 victory over Kennan Johnson and Ashton Rabalais at No. 3 doubles. The duo improved to 8-0 together in 2018 and is 3-0 in SEC doubles play.
Ingrid Gamarra Martins and Mia Horvit earned the team point for the Gamecocks with a 6-1 victory over Luba Vasilyuk and Ryann Foster at No. 2 doubles. The tandem lost the first game, but rattled off six straight games to secure the victory. Gamarra Martins and Horvit have won four straight when paired together in 2018 and are 3-0 at the No. 2 spot.
"I think we did fine at two," head coach Kevin Epley said. "One doubles was OK. Not great. Just a little out of sync. I didn't feel like our doubles warmup was that great. Two did very well. They've been playing great all year. Three was good. We could've played better at one I think. Overall, that was our seventh doubles point in a row. We've got something good at doubles and we just want to continue that streak."
Order of finish
For the second straight match, Rachel Rohrabacher was the first Gamecock to secure a win with a perfect 6-0, 6-0 win on Court 6 against Ashton Rabalais. The win was the first perfect win of Rohrabacher's career and the third for the Gamecocks this season. The junior from Tampa, Florida, is 7-0 in 2018 and holds a nine-match winning streak dating back to Jan. 14, 2018 at Florida Gulf Coast University.
No. 121 Megan Davies helped the Gamecocks take a commanding 3-0 lead with her win in straight sets over Luba Vasilyuk on Court 5. In both sets, the freshman battled with Vasilyuk in the first two games, before taking a 4-1 lead en route to both wins. The freshman improved to 8-3 in dual match play, with a team high 23 wins in 2017-18.
Shortly after Davies won her match, Mia Horvit was defeated on Court 2 by Eden Richardson, who won, 6-3, 6-2. The sophomore All-American Horvit was trailing by two games in the first set, but evened the score at 3-3. Richardson took a 5-3 lead and went on to grab the first set, 6-3. In the second set, Horvit won the first game, but dropped the next three. The loss was the first for Horvit since Feb. 11 against UCLA's No. 12 Ena Shibahara at ITA Indoors.
Paige Cline clinched the match for the Gamecocks for the second straight match. The junior, who clinched the sweep over No. 35 Texas A&M on Saturday, defeated Kennan Johnson on Court 4, 6-4, 6-2. Trailing 2-4 in the first set, Cline mounted a huge comeback to tie the score at 4 all and went on to take the first set, 6-4. With the momentum in her favor, Cline jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the second set before sealing the deal for the Gamecocks.
"She's done very well," Epley said of Cline's singles play. "Last year, I don't know if she clinched a single match because she was on the court so long, but she's getting through her matches quicker than she ever has. She's tidying up her second sets, finishing girls off. To clinch like that twice in a row is huge for the team. Bravo to her for stepping up."
1.#110 Ingrid Gamarra Martins (SC) vs. Ryann Foster (LSU) 1-6, 6-2, unfinished
2. #29 Hadley Berg (SC) vs. #67 Jessica Golovin (LSU) 6-1, 2-6, 1-0, unfinished
3. Eden Richardson (LSU) def. Mia Horvit (SC) 6-3, 6-2
4. Paige Cline (SC) def. Kennan Johnson (LSU) 6-4, 6-2
5. #121 Megan Davies (SC) def. Luba Vasilyuk (LSU) 6-1, 6-1
6. Rachel Rohrabacher (SC) def. Ashton Rabalais (LSU) 6-0, 6-0
Order of finish
6, 5, 3, 4
"It's always great to get the win. LSU made a big drive after Florida last night. We thought they might be a little bit tired. They weren't tired at all. They fought really hard. They've got a good team. I feel great coming out of this weekend 2-0. Now we're 4-0 in the SEC. We're looking at ourselves individually and things that we could do better. I think we felt like we did some things well and we're proud of those and happy individually in some of the girls. Also have some things that we feel like we need to work on going into next week." -- Head Coach Kevin Epley
UP NEXT FOR THE GAMECOCKS
The Gamecocks will hit the road for two tough SEC tests at No. 28 Tennessee on March 16 and at No. 7 Georgia on March 18. The Gamecocks are 15-46 all-time against Georgia, and 20-26 all-time against Tennessee. South Carolina holds a three-match winning streak over the Volunteers dating back to April 10, 2015, but lost its past seven matches against the Bulldogs dating back to April 10, 2011.
For updates, continue to check back with GamecocksOnline.com or follow the team on social media (@GamecockWTennis).
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