Austin Peay Women’s Tennis to do battle with Wake Forest in first round of NCAA Tournament
Clarksville, TN – The Austin Peay State University (APSU) women’s tennis team aims to become the first Ohio Valley Conference program to win an NCAA Tournament match when they meet No. 22 Wake Forest, 10:00am, Saturday, May 4th, 2019 in Athens, GA.
Austin Peay Women’s Tennis set to take on #22 Wake in first round of the NCAA Tournament Saturday morning. (APSU Sports Information)
The Governors (22-0, 8-0 OVC) earned the No. 3 seed in the four-team regional. Host Georgia, the No. 1 overall seed in the tournament, takes on No. 4 Alabama State in the opening round’s other match.
The Govs are coming off a dominant OVC Tournament Championship victory, defeating Southeast Missouri and UT Martin by 4-0 scores to win their first tournament title since the 2010 season.
The Redhawks and Skyhawks had opportunities to take the doubles point, but the Govs came up huge in each doubles portion to claim the advantage. Tatiana Lopez and partner Honoka Nakanishi were down 5-2 in the deciding doubles match against SEMO, but rallied off five straight games to claim the doubles point and extend their still active winning streak to 13 matches.
Against the Skyhawks, Schmidt and Morris were down 4-2 before winning four straight games as Lidia and Claudia Yanes Garcia also picked up a win. The twins won 6-2, but won three of four deuces, including in the clinching game.
Lidia Yanes Garcia and Lopez won both singles matches they played over the weekend, with Danielle Morris (against SEMO) and Fabienne Schmidt (against UT Martin) also chipping in with singles victories. Lopez won the championship point for the Govs, with her opponent hitting a ball into the net that sent the Govs pouring on Court No. 3 to celebrate
. Helena Kuppig saw both of her singles matches go unfinished, but she still carries a 16-match winning streak into the tournament, tied for third all-time in program history. Lidia (13) and Schmidt (12) also have winning streaks that have broken into doubles digits.
About the Wake Forest Demon Deacons
The Demon Deacons (20-8, 9-5 ACC) have not played since a loss to No. 11 Florida State in the Atlantic Coast Conference Quarterfinals, all the way back on April 19th. Wake Forest stumbles into the tournament having lost five of their last eight matches, albeit all against Top 30 opponents. The Demon Deacons have struggled away from home this season, sporting a 7-7 combined away and neutral-site record, compared to their 13-1 home mark.
Wake Forest boasts one nationally-ranked singles player and two nationally-ranked doubles pairings. Emma Davis comes in at No. 35 in the country with a 15-9 record this spring, all at No. 1 singles. Davis also received a bid to the NCAA Tennis Singles Championship, but is only 3-6 in her last nine singles matches.
Davis has had about the same success in doubles, pairing with Chandler Carter to form the No. 34 ranked pairing in the country. The duo is 15-10 this spring, including an 8-6 record in the ultra-competitive ACC. However, the pairing also comes in a slightly bad run of form, losing their last two matches and going 4-6 over their last 10 matches.
The Demon Deacons also have another ranked doubles pairing, with the No. 2 team of Eliza Omirou and Mary Caroline Meredith checking in at No. 79 nationally. Omirou and Meredith have played almost exclusively at the No. 2 pairing this season, compiling an impressive 16-5 spring record. In addition, the duo is 7-3 in their last 10 matches.
The match will be the first-ever meeting between the two schools.
With a win, the Govs would become the first OVC program to win an NCAA Tournament Match.
Tatiana Lopez and Honoka Nakanishi are on a program-record 13-match doubles winning streak.
Helena Kuppig is on a 16-match singles winning streak, tied for third for the longest in program history.
The Govs have won the doubles point in 20 straight matches.
The four-team pod also features Georgia, which was the other remaining unbeaten team alongside the Govs before their loss in the SEC Championship Match.
Wake Forest is 1-7 in matches when playing a higher-ranked opponent, but 19-1 when playing an unranked or lower-ranked opponent (loss at No. 29 Miami).
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