Jan. 16, 2011
ANN ARBOR, MICH. – The Georgia Tech women’s tennis team improved on day two of the Michigan Invitational and earned a split in eight singles matches against eighth-ranked Michigan and in four doubles matches against 13th ranked Tennessee.
Junior Lynn Blau earned her second win in as many matches to open the season with a 6-7, 7-6, 6-3 win over Michigan’s Mimi Nguyen.
“Today we played a little bit better, we were a little more relaxed,” head coach Bryan Shelton said. “The competition here is really good and we’re getting pushed in every match. To get these types of quality matches at this point in the season is good. We’re learning a lot about ourselves and gaining some confidence.
“Lynn was rock solid today,” Shelton added. “She was down 5-2 in the first set and battled back. She got down 5-2 in the second set and was down match point today. She was down match point yesterday. I couldn’t be happier for her coming through in these tough matches, staying the course and looking forward to the next point. That attitude and discipline led her today. Lynn is someone who, when she is playing with confidence, she’s very tough and we can see that developing.”
Junior Caroline Lilley recorded an upset playing from the No. 4 position as she upset the Wolverines’ 61st ranked Whitney Taney, 6-4, 6-4. Viet Ha Ngo won a tough three-set decision, 7-6, 4-6, 6-1, over Michigan’s Brooke Bolender. Rounding out the Jackets’ singles wins was freshman Muriel Wacker who handled Taylor Fournier, 6-0, 6-1.
“I’m pleased with how Caroline kept her composure,” Shelton said. “She stayed positive and stayed with her gameplan. In tough moments, she did what she said she was going to do. If we can get her going in doubles, we’ll be in good shape.
“Viet Ha does all the little things a top-level player would do in getting ready to play, and we know she is going to work hard,” Shelton said. “It’s fun to see it pay off when she has matches like she did today. She took advantage of opportunities against a very good player.”
Ngo and junior Jillian O’Neill dominated in an 8-1 doubles win over Tennessee’s Maria Sorbello and Kata Szekely. Rocio Lopez and Wacker played well in earning an 8-6 win over the Lady Vols’ Whitney Wofford and Jennifer Meredith.
“I thought our doubles looked good overall today, but we’re not communicating we well as we need to at number one,” Shelton said. “The other three spots played well. Liz and Lynn got down big early and fought back. I was pleased with their ability to fight back and stayed positive, even though they lost, I think they gained some momentum. Viet Ha and Jillian are playing really well considering they didn’t play together this fall and had a big win today. I’m impressed with how well they’ve come together in a short amount of time. Our freshman played well today, but we need them to learn how to close out opponents when they have the opportunity too.
“Overall, it was a good day,” Shelton concluded. “We saw some things where we need to get better. I feel like we’re ahead of where we were in the fall, and have the right attitude to keep getting better.”
Tech finishes play in the Michigan Invitational on Monday when they face Washington in singles play at 10 a.m. The Yellow Jackets will face the Michigan Wolverines in doubles play at 1 p.m.
Live video and stats are available by clicking here.
Singles vs. Michigan:
No. 1 – No. 11 Denise Muresan (U-M) d. No. 39 Jillian O’Neill (GT), 7-6, 6-2
No. 2 – No. 105 Sam Critser (U-M) d. Sasha Krupina (GT), 6-4, 6-4
No. 3 – Viet Ha Ngo (GT) d. Brooke Bolender (U-M), 7-6, 4-6, 6-1
No. 4 – Caroline Lilley (GT) d. No. 61 Whitney Taney (U-M), 6-4, 6-4
No. 5 – Lynn Blau (GT) d. Mimi Nguyen (U-M), 6-7, 7-6, 6-3
No. 6 – Rika Tatsuno (U-M) d. Rocio Lopez (GT), 6-3, 6-2
No. 7 – Michelle Sulahian (U-M) d. Elizabeth Kilborn (GT), 7-6 (4), 2-6, 6-3
No. 8 -Muriel Wacker (GT) d. Taylor Fournier (U-M), 6-0, 6-1
Doubles vs. Tennessee:
No. 1 – Pluskota/Boren (Tenn) d. No. 66 Lilley/Krupina (GT), 8-1
No. 2 – No. 9 Nichols/Alda (Tenn) d. No. 36 Blau/Kilborn (GT), 8-6
No. 3 – Ngo/O’Neill (GT) d. Sorbello/Szekely (Tenn), 8-1
No. 4 – Lopez/Wacker (GT) d. Wofford/Meredith (Tenn), 8-6
— RamblinWreck.com –