Oct. 11, 2009
PACIFIC PALISADES, Calif. – Sophomore Irina Falconi of the Georgia Tech Women’s Tennis Team defeated Georgia’s Chelsey Gullickson in straight sets Sunday to capture the 2009 Riviera/ITA Women’s All-American Championships singles title at the Riviera Tennis Club.
“It feels unbelievable to win this title,” Falconi said. “Winning is a great feeling no matter whether it is a a regular match or capturing a national title. I didn’t realize that I had won the title until the awards ceremony began.”
Falconi, seeded eighth in the tournament, cruised to a 6-2, 6-1 victory over the second-ranked Gullickson to earn her first individual national title. After dropping the first game of the match, Falconi went on a run and never looked back.
“It was a matter of me being on task and completely on the game plan” Falconi said. “I have played Gullickson before but I played a totally different game from the last time and I think I caught her off guard. I could feel if I kept the momentum going I would be all right. She did not give me this match but I just took it point-by-point.”
“I am very happy for Irina achieving such a remarkable goal,” head coach Bryan Shelton said. “She was able to win this National Championship in such convincing fashion which speaks to the hard work she put in this summer and fall. Irina helps us to add to the National Championships we have amassed over the past few years both individually and as a team. To think that she is only a sophomore brings a huge smile to my face.”
Since 2007, the Georgia Tech women’s tennis team has earned six national titles including Falconi’s victory this weekend. The Yellow Jackets have won two ITA National Team Indoor Championships, the 2007 NCAA Championship, Amanda McDowell won the 2008 NCAA Singles title and McDowell and Falconi captured the 2008 Riviera/ITA All-American Championships doubles title.
The All-American Championships is the first of three major events of the season that attracts the nation’s top collegiate tennis players. The other national title opportunities this year are the ITA National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships (Nov. 5-8) in New Haven, Conn., and the season-ending NCAA Championships (May 26-31) in Athens, Ga.
For more information on the Riviera/ITA All-American Championships, please click here.
– RamblinWreck.com –