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Women's Tennis Edges UCLA In 2018 NCAA Quarters

On May 19, 2018, Georgia Tech rallied back from a 3-1 deficit to defeat No. 14 UCLA in the NCAA Championship quarterfinals and secured a spot in the semifinals for the first time since 2007. The Jackets and Bruins battled for over four hours, facing rain delays and eventually moving indoors, as UCLA came out with a 3-1 lead. After Johnnise Renaud claimed her singles match and the match was moved inside, the Jackets won the final three matches on the courts, collecting singles wins from Paige Hourigan, Nami Otsuka and Ida Jarlskog to reach the final four.

Tech’s top-ranked doubles team of Kenya Jones and Paige Hourigan secured the only doubles victory for the Jackets, defeating No. 7 Jada Hart/Terri Fleming, 6-4. UCLA would claim the other two doubles matches to secure the point and early 1-0 lead.

Just before 9 p.m., rain began to fall and play was suspended for the first time with every match but court four playing in the second set.

When play resumed over an hour later, Johnnise Renaud quickly evened the match at 1-1, downing Terri Fleming, 6-1, 6-3, on court three. Moments later, play was suspended for a second time and the match was eventually moved indoors tied at 1-1. Play resumed around 10:35 p.m.

UCLA took a 3-1 lead, winning the next two singles matches on courts two and six against Kenya Jones and Victoria Flores, respectively. Tech would need the final three matches playing to secure the win.

Hourigan got the rally going, securing another comeback victory. The senior dropped the first set to No. 9 Ena Shibahara, 6-3, but forced a deciding third set winning in the second, 6-3. In the final set, Hourigan broke to go up 3-2 and held serve to take a 4-2 lead. UCLA followed with a hold, but Hourigan claimed the next two points to seal the match with a 6-3 third set win, setting up a 3-2 score.

With two courts still playing, Otsuka battled Ayan Broomfield on court five, trying to seal a straight-set win in a second set tiebreak. Otsuka rallied in the first set after falling behind 4-0 to win the set, 7-5. Tied at 5-5 in the second set, Bloomfield grabbed a 6-5 edge, but Otsuka forced a tiebreak at 6-all. The then-sophomore rolled in the tiebreak, collecting the win, 7-2, tying the match at 3-3.

All eyes turned to court four where No. 125 Ida Jarlskog was battling No. 67 Abi Altick. Jarlskog claimed the first set, 7-6 (6), but fell in the second, 6-0. Jarlskog opened the final set with a 3-1 lead and held serve to go up 4-1. Both Altick and Jarlskog held serve to setup a 5-3 final set with a chance for Jarlskog to serve out the match. The Jacket fell behind 0-40 in the final game, but rallied to win the next four points and clinch the match with a 6-3 third set win.

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